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McCarthy Salutes 'Magnificent' Barry

Midfielder learning all the time alongside on-loan teammate.

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James McCarthy says playing alongside experienced campaigner Gareth Barry is helping to improve his own game.

Both players joined Everton on transfer deadline day and have struck up an instant understanding in the deep-lying midfield positions.

The Blues have won every league game Barry has played since his loan switch from Manchester City, with the latest maximum points haul being the 2-1 victory over Hull City at the weekend.

McCarthy scooped the man of the match accolade against the Tigers and later praised the influence that his engine-room teammate - 10 years his senior - is having on himself and the Everton side.

“He’s different class,” McCarthy explained to evertontv. “He was magnificent today alongside me and it’s a joy to work with him on a daily basis. You see today how much he means to the team.”

More emphasis is likely to be placed on the McCarthy-Barry partnership now that fellow anchorman Darron Gibson faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament.

McCarthy was on the Aviva Stadium pitch when the former Manchester United man suffered his injury in the Republic of Ireland’s 3-1 win against Kazakhstan in Dublin last Tuesday evening.

However, the 22-year-old dismissed the suggestion that his own Everton first-team chances have improved with Gibson unavailable for selection.

“I’ve not looked at it that way,” he added. “I’m gutted for Gibbo because it’s one of those freak injuries that you never want to see happen to anyone.

“The main thing now is that I keep working hard and try to get in the team as much as I can. It’s not about Darron getting injured and me going in there. I’m gutted for him and we have to keep his spirits up so he can bounce back as soon as he can.”

McCarthy was also full of praise for wingers Kevin Mirallas and Steven Pienaar who scored their first goals of the season to keep Everton on the tails of league leaders Arsenal.

The Toffees are four points behind Arsene Wenger’s side and the same distance ahead of last season’s Premier League Champions Manchester United.

McCarthy said: “We were deserved winners. Each and every one of us got about and made it difficult for Hull. They got their equaliser and I thought they wanted to sit on that. But we kept the ball moving and then there was a piece of magic from Steven Pienaar.

“I’ve only seen him in training but you can see he is a world-class player. It’s brilliant to work with these players day in day out.

“Kevin got his goal and I thought he took it really well. He was brilliant today. He got at the full-back every time he had the ball.”

Can Everton make it four straight home Premier League wins on the bounce when Spurs visit Goodison on Sunday 3 November? Be there to find out - tickets are now on general sale.

Secure your seat by clicking here or calling 0871 663 1878*. Alternatively, visit either the Park End Box Office, Everton Two in Liverpool One or TicketQuarter in Queen Square. Tickets start from £32 for adults and only £16 for Under-16s.

robert forbesMirallas, McCarthy, Barry, Osman and Pienaar. Best 5 across the middle in the Premier league.

Tuesday 22nd October 10:35 Report Comment
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