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Stoke City (H) Fri 26 Dec 2014, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Martinez Happy With Intensity

by Daniel Alston @efc_danalston

Roberto Martinez praised his side's 'defensive intensity' after Sunday's 2-1 win over Real Betis.

Nikica Jelavic's close-range finish and Kevin Mirallas' fortuitous strike earned the Blues a final win of pre-season, in what was the new manager's first home game in charge.

Having completed three high-profile games in America over the past fortnight, a lacklustre first half at Goodison could have been forgiven.

And with the new Barclays Premier League season starting with a trip to Norwich next weekend, Martinez is pleased with what was achieved in the final warm-up fixture.

"Football is about finding the way to be competitive," he said.

"Today we saw what this dresssing room has - an incredible competitive edge. As you could see early on, we couldn't find the simple pass.

"I wouldn't say that physically we were tired, but we were mentally lethargic. It was difficult to be ourselves but the manner that we reacted and defended with intensity was great.

"Betis are a side that I admire. I think they did extremely well last season and are well-organised. They can test you massively and I wanted that.

"We allowed them to press us high up and we wanted to stop them.

"In many ways it was a perfect pre-season game to finish on. To be able to overcome all of the travelling and demands we had and win was great to see."

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