Dyche Sets Challenge For Everton Squad

Sean Dyche has emphasised the need for Everton staff and players to take a collective responsibility and "make things happen" to collect crucial points in the season run-in.

The Blues travel to take on Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon (3pm BST), looking to bounce back from last weekend’s disappointing defeat at home to Fulham.

The Toffees have a strong record against Palace, winning four of the past six league meetings between the sides, including an impressive 3-0 home victory over the Eagles earlier this season.

However, Dyche’s men face a tough test on Saturday. Palace have enjoyed an upturn in form since the arrival of Roy Hodgson, winning all three of their games following the former England manager’s return.

Speaking during Thursday’s press conference at Finch Farm, Dyche discussed the challenge of his team’s attempts to improve their away form and how their fate ultimately rests with them.

He explained: “The [away record] hasn’t been great for a couple of seasons. For sure, it’s tactical, but it’s also a mentality thing as well. You’ve got to be ready as if it’s a home game and deliver as if it’s a home game. Generally speaking, it’s a mental shift.

“It’s taking on the challenge. People say, 'They can’t do this away, they can’t do that away', so I remind the players to change that. Let’s change that noise. Let’s change that story. You can’t just wait for some magic dust to make it change. It’s down to us as a collective force to make that happen.

“That’s what I’ve been relaying to the players. Let’s not wait for things to happen. Let’s make things happen. Let’s change the rhetoric and the story.”

Along with highlighting the need for the group to take ownership in changing their fortunes, the Everton manager spoke about the need for consistency during each 90-minute contest, as well as from week to week.

Dyche labelled last weekend’s defeat to Fulham as a “step back” and was disappointed by the lack of response to Fulham’s second goal.

“I’ve spoken since I got here about the consistency of what we do, and we lost that throughout the performance against Fulham,” he said. “It’s not just a week-by-week consistency, it’s actually throughout a game.

“We just lost the details; a couple of inconsistent moments, and we got punished. That’s sometimes what the Premier League does to you.

“We’ve got enough experience in the squad. They’re not stupid. They know when we’ve stepped off what we were doing. We remind them, go through it with them, and show them some analysis. I think they were as disappointed as I was by the reaction to, simply, going down by a goal.”

Despite his frustration, Dyche knows his players can perform at a higher level and is keen for his team to return to that following a difficult couple of weeks.

“It doesn’t change everything,” he added, referencing last week’s result. “There’s plenty of football to be played. We just came off our mark and it’s important to react against what happened because you can’t always control every game.

“These things go against you. It’s about how quickly you can react and get on top of the game. We’ve done that pretty well since I’ve been here, and we’ve reminded players of that fact.”