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Doucoure On Personal Form And Recharging For Key Battle

Abdoulaye Doucoure says Everton will recharge their batteries and prepare for another key battle when Brentford visit Goodison Park this weekend.

The Blues played out a goalless draw with Watford at Vicarage Road on Wednesday evening to nudge their points tally up to 36 for the season - two points better off than 17th-placed Burnley and 18th-placed Leeds United, having played a game less than the Yorkshire club.

The Blues dominated the Hornets on their home patch, registering 16 shots on goal - five of which were on target, but ultimately failed to find a way through a stubborn defence.

Speaking to evertontv afterwards, Doucoure believes he and his teammates lacked "freshness" in their latest outing, following impressive back-to-back victories over Chelsea and Leicester City.

There were, however, positives to take from the evening - and Doucoure is looking to swell momentum that has returned seven points from the past nine on offer.

"We are a little bit disappointed because we came here to get three points, but every Premier League game is difficult," he said. "I think today our legs were a little bit heavy. We didn't create so many chances, but it's still another point on the board and we'll keep going. 

"Watford made it difficult for us, but you have to take the positive. 

"Of course, we wanted to win and create a gap between ourselves and other teams but if you can't do that, then don't lose the game and we did that. 

"Seven points from the past three games is good. At the moment, I think the momentum is good and the team spirit is very good. 

"We're back at Goodison next and we need to show the same mentality, with more freshness."

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WATCH VIDEO 01:56

HIGHLIGHTS: WATFORD 0-0 EVERTON

Watch key action from Vicarage Road draw.


Doucoure found himself out of the starting line-up for consecutive home games against Manchester United and Leicester City last month.

In a frank assessment of his form, the Mali international accepts his levels dipped below those required - but says the belief in his own qualities and work on the training ground remained steadfast in a bid to recover his place in the team.

Doucoure was recalled as a starter for the 240th Merseyside derby and caught the eye with a typically energetic display, one that has seen him retain his place for the three games since that trip to Anfield.

"There is competition and I came out of the team," he continued. "Even with my strengths and the quality I have, I wasn't good enough in some of the games and that's why I dropped to the bench for a couple of games. 

"Of course, I was disappointed but I'm a hard worker - I always have been and I will always work hard to get myself in the team. 

"I worked to build my confidence and get back in the team. I got that chance [against Liverpool] and I feel like I took it. 

"People know I like to recover a lot of balls and go forward as well. 

"Against Watford was not my best night but I will keep working hard to get my best shape, as I want to do everything I can to help the team."

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WATCH VIDEO 02:14

LAMPARD'S MIXED EMOTIONS TO WATFORD DRAW

Boss feels it's a point closer to safety - but Everton could have had more.


Everton now have a Goodison Park double on the horizon, with Brentford the visitors on Sunday (4.30pm BST), before Crystal Palace head to Merseyside four days later.

The Blues' home form since Frank Lampard took the managerial reigns in late January has been excellent, with six wins recorded from nine matches.

The vociferous support - at Goodison Park, on the road and even outside Finch Farm - has also had a tangible impact in recent weeks.

Yet, despite the positive momentum, Doucoure insists there will be no complacency from the squad as the Toffees bid to secure their Premier League status for next term.

"We know the league is not finished - we are not safe yet," added Doucoure. "We have to take every opportunity to climb up the table and get ourselves safe. 

"The next game is going to be very tough but everyone is hungry for it and very motivated to fight again. 

"Of course, we really look forward to playing in front of our fans, wherever we are. 

"In Goodison we have been very good and I think that's because of the fans. We see them at the training ground, at Goodison, on the away days... It's incredible. We want to thank them for the support. 

"We've shown every game at Goodison recently that we can beat anybody there. 

"Brentford is going to be another tough game but at Goodison we have that confidence and belief that in every game we can take something. We want to show that again.

"I know the fans will be there again on Sunday and, together, we can have a great performance."