Lampard: We Must Harness Everton Spirit

Frank Lampard says Everton must harness the squad’s strong team spirit as the Blues aim to kick-start their season when Nottingham Forest visit Goodison Park on Saturday.

The Blues boss has witnessed encouraging signs from Everton’s opening two Premier League contests but insists his team must improve in key areas.

Having been on the end of a narrow 1-0 loss against Chelsea in their campaign opener, Lampard’s side were again unfortunate to leave empty-handed from a closely-fought encounter at Aston Villa on Saturday.

The Toffees responded impressively to falling 2-0 behind late in the game – instantly halving the deficit through a Lucas Digne own goal and then creating several chances to equalise in a grandstand finish at Villa Park.

Lampard told evertontv: “There is a good spirit in the team, and we have to harness that.

“We’re not happy to lose two matches, but in terms of performance, there are lots of things we liked and lots to improve on.

“In the first half of the game [against Villa], we were so-so, there wasn’t much in the game.

“We didn’t have quite enough spark, particularly in the forward areas – but in the second half, we were better and created some good chances to score.

“In these first two games, I can’t say I’m devastated with the performances – far from it.

 “Against Chelsea, I thought we were very good. Against Villa, probably not quite so [good], but with the chances we create, it’s a game we have to not lose.”

Summer signings Conor Coady and Amadou Onana made their Everton debuts in the Villa clash.

Onana was introduced as an 81st-minute substitute and created Everton’s goal with a powerful run forward and driven low cross, which Villa left-back Digne could only deflect into his own net.

Coady started the game, meanwhile, and was a vocal and authoritative presence in Everton’s backline.

Lampard is convinced the England defender will only go from strength to strength in an Everton shirt.

“Conor was great, with his passing range, and the way he organises the team,” he said.

“It’s not easy coming in [to the Club] during the week, even though he is an experienced player.

“But, as a team, we can play better. We can play better with a back three. It gives you a lot of angles and we didn’t utilise them the way we should have done.

“The more we keep working on that, the better we’ll get.”

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Blues lost at Aston Villa on Saturday.