Benitez's Goodison Park Target

Rafa Benitez says Everton want to “build a fortress” at Goodison Park but have a lot to improve following a rousing victory over Burnley on Monday.

Everton stunned their visitors with three goals in six minutes after falling behind to Ben Mee’s 53rd-minute header.

Michael Keane planted Andros Townsend’s inswung cross beyond Nick Pope and goalkeeper Pope was absolutely helpless five minutes later when Townsend let fly from 25 yards.

Demarai Gray put the result beyond doubt when he skipped through for a third goal in as many games.

"I am really pleased with the connection between the team and the fans and we are looking to build a fortress here,” said Benitez.

"Both Demarai Gray and Andros Townsend have quality and are good pros. They are keen to learn, even Andros at his age.

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Forward on his breath-taking first Everton goal in 3-1 win over Burnley at Goodison.

“I think what the fans want is a team that gives everything and they can see that every day.

"The players of last year, maybe they were not performing at the level, now they are giving everything and the fans appreciate that. I think that is the way to move forward.

“What I told the players in the dressing room is we have done nothing yet.

“We are at the beginning, we have to improve so many things but we are really pleased because everybody is trying to do their best."

Townsend will undoubtedly steal the headlines for a breathtaking strike that sparked pandemonium at Goodison and decisively shifted the momentum in Everton's favour. 

The forward’s goal arrived five minutes after Keane’s leveller and the introduction of Andre Gomes, as Benitez switched to a conventional back four and beefed-up midfield.

Gray crowned a fine individual display with a slick finish beyond Pope.

Everton could have had more, the otherwise influential Gomes off-target with a presentable opportunity and Doucoure offside when converting a Seamus Coleman cross.

Benitez’s team are fourth in the Premier League, level on 10 points with leaders Manchester United, ahead of a visit to Aston Villa on Saturday.

“The main thing in this team, everyone said we needed wingers,” said Benitez.

“Today, Richarlison did a great job [as centre-forward] also and the two wingers helped the striker do better.

“When I decided Andros could be an important player for us, I was convinced.

“He is a professional and keen to learn and we have a group of players who want to improve.

“They are happy if we want to work hard and he is one of those.

"It was a good game, very physical. It was not easy but overall we were okay.

"When we scored our goal, we had more confidence, played 4-3-3, created more chances and could have scored more goals.”

Everton’s victory from behind was a second in such circumstances this season – following the success against Southampton last month – after only two wins from similar predicaments in the previous 59 matches.

Benitez’s team have scored 10 goals in their four league matches and conceded more than one in only one game.

The only piece of bad news on the night was confirmation of a quadriceps injury for Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who missed this encounter and is set for at least “two-to-three weeks” on the sidelines.

“It could be longer, he broke his toe, then was playing with an injection, with pain, it was not easy for him, he was not training with the rest of the team and that is the reason, I think, why he had the problem,” said Benitez.

“For me, it will be longer than two or three weeks.

“You can see form the first minute of the first game, the commitment is there.

“The players want to win and compete.

“They have the desire to do well.

“When you have a problem like conceding a goal, they want to react.”