Lampard charges Everton players on mentality change

Oviri Kelvin, Sports Editor, Abuja

Everton manager Frank Lampard has called on his players to improve on their performance if they are to avoid another relegation battle in the English Premier League next season.

Lampard said this after the club were battered 4-0 by Minnesota United at Allianz Field in the second game of their preseason tour in the United States.

Recall that last season, the Merseyside club struggled almost throughout the 2021-22 Premier League campaign to avoid being relegated to the Championship but impressively snatched a win against Crystal Palace to retain its topflight status with a game left to end its season.

In his post-match reaction, the former England international noted that after they survived the relegation scare last season, he had to forgo the incident and wants the players to do the same.

“The players have to understand that we were in a relegation battle for a big portion of last season,” the Everton boss said

“We had an amazing night [against Palace] and an amazing run which was great historically for the club but, as soon as that finished, I put it to bed very quickly so the players better put it to bed as well,” he added.

Lampard, who coached Chelsea before he was sacked to take over Everton’s job after the dismissal of Rafael Benitez in January 2022, underlined that the Toffees must have to improve on their game to avoid a repeat of last season’s scenario.

“We were in that fight for a reason and if we don’t want to be in that situation again, they have to be better, I have to be better,” Lampard stated.

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Everton in this summer transfer window sold Brazilian Richarlison to Tottenham for a club-record fee and acquired Burnley’s centre-back, James Tarkowski on a free transfer.

Going forward, Lampard admitted that the club squad is deficient in certain areas and will ensure to strengthen it further.

The Toffees’ boss’ penultimate statement would not be unconnected to the recent rumours linking several European players including former Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard and Chelsea’s Armando Broja with a move to Goodison Park.

“There is a void in forward areas through the team, there are things that I want to strengthen,” Lampard said.

Everton started its preseason match against Arsenal and sustained a 2-0 loss at the M&T Bank Stadium before being battered by Minnesota United.

The club kickstart its Premier League campaign against Chelsea on August 6 but will tackle Blackpool on Sunday at Bloomfield Road before rounding its preseason tour at Goodison Park with Dynamo Kyiv on Friday, 29 July.

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