Jagielka's Double Derby Motiviation
Bragging rights and high league position at stake.
There's double derby motivation this weekend for Everton, according to Phil Jagielka.
The England defender explained that maintaining he Blues' excellent start and lofty Premier League position is equally as important as securing local bragging rights.
Everton are currently fourth in the league table and are also looking to respond to three derby defeats last season.
"I think it's a strange one," Jagielka told evertontv. "Normally we are desperate to beat them just because it's Liverpool. But this time we would love to beat them but we have to think about keeping ourselves up towards the top of the league.
"Normally we are playing catch-up (in the league table) by now so it's nice to be up there."
Jagielka himself is in prime form after a man of the match display at QPR last time out saw team-mate Tim Howard label him an 'animal'.
The 29-year-old says he's expecting to be busier this season as Everton unfurl a more attacking style.
"I am not too sure if that was a compliment," Jagielka smiled. "I will have to ask him! It was one of those days, I thought Sylvain had a great game next to me. You throw yourself in there and sometimes the ball hits you and sometimes it doesn't.
"We have conceded goals in games and with the expansive football we are playing we are having a little bit more to do. As long as we get a decent amount of points on the board, if we concede it is just one of those things."
Indeed, Everton's easy-on-the-eye displays this term - particularly at Goodison Park - have the squad in confident mood - though Jagielka rejected talk of a 'favourites' tag.
"We don't look at it like that," he insisted. "Derbies are a little bit different. We have a had a good start to the season so confidence should be high. We are all going to be up for it and hopefully we can get Goodison rocking.
Obviously Steven Pienaar is a big player for us so seeing him get sent off was disappointing. But we have players who can come in. Hopefully we can get Felli back and possibly one or two others."