Frank Lampard is adamant that his Everton side will give everything in their upcoming FA Cup clash with Crystal Palace on Sunday.
The Blues are on a high after beating Newcastle 1-0 at Goodison Park in midweek, with Alex Iwobi’s 99th-minute goal proving the difference. That gave the club some much-needed breathing space in the battle against relegation.
Away from the Premier League, though, there is the matter of an FA Cup quarter final to deal with this weekend. Lampard knows his side are in a fight in the league, but claims that will take nothing away from their desire in this competition.
The Everton manager remarked: “Yeah I’m very aware of it. I’m very aware of it.
“In the conversations with the chairman, he loves the FA Cup. We have a real perspective on the priority of the Premier League, but we’re in a quarter final now, and we’ll give everything. It’s as simple as that.
“We understand what that means to the fans, we’ll travel down in big numbers on Sunday. If we could get to Wembley that’d be a huge occasion and I’m sure that tie would be difficult when you look at the rest of the draw.
“But the job in hand is Palace, a really tough match against a team that’s playing well. We have an international break afterwards and I know some players will go and play elsewhere, but for me it’s all about Sunday.
“Get to the end of Sunday and have no energy left in your legs as far as I care. We’ll give everything.”
Everton will be without Allan on Sunday afternoon after he was sent off in the second half against Newcastle for a tackle on Allan Saint-Maximin. Appeals from the Blues to overturn that decision or to lower the severity of the punishment were both rejected on Friday.
Both Dele Alli and Donny van de Beek are cup-tied for the fixture, leaving the club’s midfield options potentially limited. But, Lampard is prepared for what is to come.
“Isaac Price has been with us and trained really well with us, he’ll be part of the squad. You can’t forget Andre, he hasn’t played so many minutes lately but he’s a talented player for us,” the boss added.
“Doucoure’s there, players that can do a job for us in midfield – certain players in the back line have played in midfield, Andros Townsend, Alex Iwobi. We’re definitely in a position now where we are tighter for numbers, so it could affect how we set up in the game. I’ve got another 24 hours or so to see that.”
Everton fed off the atmosphere at a raucous Goodison Park on Thursday evening to secure their latest victory. But, the manager knows his side will be on the reverse of that this time around.
He said: “It will be the flip, Palace have got really strong support. Really loud, very vocal and they’re in a similar position to us – a team desperate to get to Wembley and try and win something this season. It will be a test of character in a different sense.
“I like the character of the team, I know that people are questioning it at the minute and think it’s time for them to stand up and show that, they certainly did last night (Thursday) and must in a different way on Sunday. In terms of how we’ve been away from home, can we be more compact and more aggressive in terms of how we play wherever we are on the pitch? For sure.
“The test will be standing up emotionally and showing your character, but also on a football level we need to be better away from home. That’ll start on Sunday, we have to be better if we’re to get what we want.”