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Stoke City (A) Wed 4 Mar 2015, 19:45, Barclays Premier League

by Adam Clark @efc_adamclark

Everton would be topping the Barclays Premier League table if they'd acquired all the points their performances have merited this season.

That is the assertion of manager Roberto Martinez, who has guided his new team to seventh in the standings, four points behind leaders Arsenal with 12 points from seven games.

Last time out, a 3-1 defeat at Manchester City ended a run of three successive wins as the Blues relinquished their tag as the top flight's only unbeaten side.

But Martinez knows his charges might have been sitting in pole position had they not started the campaign with three frustrating draws.

Asked if Everton's displays deserved a more impressive points tally than they've accrued, the Toffees boss told evertontv: "The straight answer is yes, especially because the first three games were in the transfer window and the transfer window really affected those results.  

"I thought the performances in the three draws were as dominant and as good as you're going to get, and probably we dropped six points when we should have got the full nine points from those three games.

"We all admired the display we had in the first 45 minutes against Newcastle and probably that's the picture that we want of our 90 minute performances, and that's what we need to work towards.

"But, overall, we've had to play difficult games, different opposition and we've adapted really, really well."

Next up for Everton is a meeting with newly-promoted Hull City, visitors to Goodison Park this Saturday.

Midfielder Steven Pienaar is facing a race to prove his fitness after five games out, while summer signing Antolin Alcaraz is finally edging his way towards a belated Blues debut following a recurring groin complaint.

Martinez has also had to counter injuries to Darron Gibson, Tony Hibbert and Arouna Kone so far this term and admits he's grown impatient to determine what might be his best 11.

"I would like to admire the full potential of the squad and to do that you have to have everyone fully fit," he said.
"I think that you can only say what is the strongest side when you've got it on the pitch.

"I'm very excited about the squad and I think we've got different options. We've never had the full squad available but it's something for us to work towards and then allow football to make the decision of what is our strongest team."

It's not too late to see the Blues tackle the Tigers. To buy your ticket, click here or call 0871 663 1878*.

Alternatively, visit the Park End Box Office at Goodison Park, Everton Two in Liverpool One or TicketQuarter in Queen Square.

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