Branthwaite's Pride At Honouring Michael Jones

Jarrad Branthwaite has opened up on his “massive” pride at being able to honour the late Michael Jones following Saturday’s win at Goodison Park. 

In front of another sell-out crowd, the Toffees capped off this season’s home schedule with a comfortable 1-0 win over Sheffield United. 

Once the game had finished, Blues players returned to the pitch from the dressing room to do a lap of appreciation with their loved ones to thank Evertonians for their phenomenal support across what has been a turbulent campaign. 

As he soaked up applause for a fine individual season, Branthwaite proudly donned a special scarf dedicated to Michael who tragically lost his life while working on the new stadium build at Bramley-Moore Dock last August. 

Michael was a passionate Everton fan who travelled home and away watching the Blues from an early age, and speaking of the privilege of honouring the 26-year-old, Branthwaite told “Hopefully we would have made him proud like we have tried to make every Evertonian proud.

“We have stayed up and I am sure that is what he would have wanted. He would have liked to see us win games and it’s a massive thing to wear the scarf for him after the game on Saturday, and I am sending my best wishes to his family and friends.”

Branthwaite produced another colossal defensive display for the Blues on Saturday, helping the team extend their record to just one defeat from their past eight outings. The victory was also the Toffees' fifth successive win with a clean sheet at home – a formidable run that has matched a previous Club record.

Additionally, only league leaders Arsenal have managed to secure more Premier League shutouts than the Toffees so far (13).

Reflecting on that success and the impressive form of Sean Dyche’s men, Branthwaite added: “If you have got a solid defensive base then you have always got a chance of winning games. 

“It’s not just the defence, it’s the whole team. We defend from the front and we are all in it together. We have had a few difficult results, but we have shown the mentality we have got as a team to be where we are this season and stay in the division.

“It’s been a difficult season for everyone involved in the Club. It shows how far we have come, these last few weeks – the performances we have put on to stay in the division. It shows the quality we have got and it’s all down to the manager, staff, players and fans."