Pickford: Everton Will Have Strong Saints Gameplan

Jordan Pickford says Everton will go to Southampton on Saturday “with a strong gameplan” as he emphasised the team’s desire to reward the Blues’ loyal travelling support with victory at St Mary's Stadium.

The Toffees head into the meeting with Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side on the back of a 2-0 success against Bournemouth at Goodison Park - a win which saw them move to within two points of seventh place in the top flight.

England No. 1 Pickford outlined his belief Everton can put together a positive run of results and propel themselves up the Premier League table. He highlighted the resilience and depth of talent within the squad, as well as hard work the players have been putting in on the training pitch under the tutelage of boss Marco Silva.

“Last weekend, I think we showed a lot of the character and spirit in our team,” he said.

“Bournemouth started well but then I think we showed our fight. After about 30 minutes, we went up a gear. Then you go into the second half and we started it very well - the best we’ve started in the second half all season.

“We fought hard to get the victory, we got the fans off their seats at times and that’s how we need to keep playing.

“We’ve all got belief in the team and the manager believes in us. We work hard every day and when you get those three points on a matchday, that breeds more confidence.

“It will be a very, very tough game [against Southampton] but that’s why we train every day, so we’ll have a good gameplan going into it.

“Hopefully we can come away with a win and send the fans home happy on their long trip back.”

Pickford is in line to make his 61st consecutive Premier League start for the Blues in Saturday’s game.

Indeed, the goalkeeper has played every minute of top-flight action for Everton since signing for the Club in 2017.

The 24-year-old, who became the youngest goalkeeper to represent England at a World Cup finals during the Three Lions’ run to the semi-finals of the tournament last summer, has revealed his determination to continue to develop his game.

“All I’m trying to do is my job and, when a goal goes in, you’re thinking ‘what could I have done better?’,” he explained. 

“I always say I just want to be the best I can be, whatever that becomes.

“We work hard all week to work on our detail and our tactics to get that clean sheet. 

“The Premier League is very tough, of course, and there’s a lot of competition, but all we can do is focus on ourselves and get better day by day.

“We’ve all been working hard for the game on Saturday and we are feeling confident going into it.”

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