Bernard Thriving Under Demanding Boss Silva

by Paul McNamara
@Everton

Bernard says he is relishing playing for a “demanding” manager in Marco Silva – and the Brazilian insists Everton are profiting from the work ethic instilled by their boss.

Attacker Bernard has started 16 Premier League matches for Everton following his move from Shakhtar Donetsk last summer.

He was restored to the Blues' line up for Sunday’s Merseyside derby and promptly forged an effective and industrious alliance with Lucas Digne.

The left-sided duo each ran 6.3 miles and between them embarked on 38 sprints.

Bernard reclaimed his spot for the derby after a valuable turn from the bench in the victory at at Cardiff City earlier in the week.

And the 26-year-old, who will hope he has done enough to retain his place for this weekend's visit to Newcastle United, revealed hard work is a prerequisite for any player wanting to feature in one of Silva’s teams.

“Without a doubt, [the manager is demanding] and emphasises the need to work hard – it is a collective effort and through that we become stronger as a team," Bernard told evertontv.

“We have to do a lot of work. Football has changed a lot [for forwards], it is not just an offensive game, you have to be defensive as well.

“I give my best not just in attack but defensively, too.

“I have that intuition, that if you keep a clean sheet you are one step closer to victory.”

Bernard contested 18 duels against Liverpool – no player on the pitch competed in more – as he teamed up with Frenchman Digne to smother the visitors’ threat on Everton’s left.

The two internationals linked intelligently going forward, too, after half-time in particular, as Everton directed more of their offensive play down the left flank – 42.9 per cent compared to 32.1 per cent before the break.

Everton's meeting with Liverpool represented only the second time Digne and Bernard have completed 90 minutes together.


They both started and finished Everton’s 2-1 victory at Leicester City when Bernard made his full debut for the Club back in October and, in the meantime, the pair have been strengthening their understanding on the training pitches at USM Finch Farm.

And turning his thoughts to Saturday's visit to a Newcastle team which has won its past four home matches, Bernard echoed the thoughts of goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, who this week expressed his desire for Everton to seize on their growing momentum by securing a positive outcome at St. James' Park.

“It is very important to focus and prepare for Newcastle because it will be a difficult match and we want to keep adding points to our total,” added Bernard, whose side sit 10th and in the centre of a concertinaed area of the Premier League table.

“I hope to play but there is a lot of competition and everybody in the squad wants the same thing.

“Me and Lucas are constantly talking on the pitch and during training.

“And as he is playing a bit farther back he has better vision of what is going on than I do.

“He speaks to me continually during the game, he sees the full picture and it is important he tells me where I can close down the spaces and prevent the ball from getting through. I think we are working well together."





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