Naismith: No Everton burnout

  • Last Updated: February 25 2013, 7:19 GMT

Everton midfielder Steven Naismith insists there has been no talk of player burnout as David Moyes' squad look to secure a positive end to the season.

Steven Naismith: No talk of fatigue in camp
Steven Naismith: No talk of fatigue in camp

The Toffees lost 2-1 at Norwich on Saturday following a late rally by the home team in a match they should have long put to bed after taking a first-half lead through Leon Osman.

Moyes' men have now not won in the Barclays Premier League in three attempts, which has seen them fall six points behind Tottenham, who have played a match less, in the race to finish in the top four.

Everton host Oldham in a FA Cup fifth-round replay on Tuesday night as they aim to move into the quarter-finals, where they would be at home to Wigan.

Naismith insists the first-team group - one of the smallest in the Premier League - just have to roll their sleeves up and get on with it.

He said: "The squad haven't moaned about tiredness, it is not something we've spoken about.

"We're professionals and you have to go out and do your job. We work every day and we work at a good level so the boys are definitely fit enough. I don't think they're tired at all."

Naismith added: "We've maybe not been playing as well as we did at the start of the season but we've ground out some results.

"We're disappointed defensively with the way we conceded. We've been working on it in training because we have lost a few late goals from balls into the box. It's disappointing but we just need to move on.

"We didn't have as many shots or take as many chances as we should have, with the amount of ball we had and comfortable possession we should have worked the goalie a bit more.

"When you drop points it gives all the teams round about you an opportunity and that's what's happened here.

"Arsenal have picked up points and it will make it tougher, but we just have to go into the next league game and think that we can take the points and that other teams drop some."

Nikica Jelavic again failed to find the net on Saturday, his best opportunity coming early on when a close-range shot was saved by Norwich keeper Mark Bunn.

Everton manager Moyes, though, continues to have faith in the Croatian, who last scored against Cheltenham in the FA Cup on January 7.

"We give him an opportunity to play and score," Moyes said.

"He took one great on his chest in the first half and he was a bit unlucky not to score.

"You can only keep putting him out there. If he scores and gets the goals, he probably wins Everton games.

"He's really important to us and we hope that he's going to come up with the goods between now and the end of the season."


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