Martinez reiterates support for Mirallas

by | 30/12/2015  44 Comments  [Jump to last]
Roberto Martinez insists that Kevin Mirallas is not playing for his Everton future in the coming weeks despite the fact that he has started just two Premier League matches all season.

Evertonian eyebrows were raised when both the Belgian and Aaron Lennon were left out of the matchday squad altogether for Monday's home against Stoke City, but the manager claims both were rested after their appearances at Newcastle two days earlier.

Martinez rationalised the decision in terms of avoiding injury to a player who had claims was blighted by niggling complaints at the start of the season but says the 28-year-old was in good form in the 1-0 win over the Magpies on Boxing Day.

As a sprinter, the manager says he left Lennon out for the same reason even though neither player played the full 90 minutes but Mirallas's omission in particular prompted concern that the mercurial forward could leave Everton in January in search of regular football.

"I wouldn't say it's a pivotal month for [Kevin]," Martinez countered. "What's been important is for Kevin to keep himself fit and working hard.

"The little niggles he had at the start of the season stopped him from being at his very best but against Newcastle he was sharp. Playing two games in three days was something we had to be very aware about.

"But Aaron Lennon and Kevin being two sprinters meant we had to protect them. They both bring something very different. Clearly we have real strength and numbers.

"They will play an important role in January but it's important for us all as a team."  

Reader Comments (44)

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Michael Penley
1 Posted 30/12/2015 at 17:26:52
Ah. Now we know why he never worries about Kone playing too much. It's because he never sprints at all, content to cruise around at jogging pace the entire game.
Kevin Naylor
2 Posted 30/12/2015 at 17:30:26
More bull from the master.
Frank Crewe
3 Posted 30/12/2015 at 17:34:24
28 years old Mirallas can't handle two games in quick succession but almost 35 years old Gareth Barry can. Makes perfect sense.
Martin O'Sullivan
4 Posted 30/12/2015 at 17:40:26
even if it was all true I wouldn't and probably couldn't believe him after all the rubbish he's spouted!!! Lol..
Brent Stephens
5 Posted 30/12/2015 at 17:45:51
I guess not everything he says or does has to be bull?
Andrew Laird
6 Posted 30/12/2015 at 18:00:49
Martinez referred to McCarthy as a "sprinter" when he injured his hamstring a while ago and he could not wait to get him back in the starting 11 whether he was match fit or not. Bobby's favourites don't have to buikd up match fitness with cameos, they are straight in. Why do Howard, Stones, Lukaku, Barry, Coleman, Barkley, Jagielka start every game regardless? Are they fitter than everyone else? (With the exception of Howard they have all performed really well but surely one of them needs a rest as well???) Bobby talks absolute guff and this is just more bullshit from the spin king.

Oh for a proper journalist to take him to task on his contradictions...

Geoff Evans
7 Posted 30/12/2015 at 18:31:26
How much rest time do Lennon and Miralles need between games to recover? They are supposed to be athletes.

Will someone please tell Mr Martinez to learn when to open his mouth and when to keep it shut. Some of his tactics are questionable, a lot of his soundbites are downright ridiculous.

Trevor Lynes
8 Posted 30/12/2015 at 19:12:56
I am really concerned if Lukaku gets injured as we definitely do not have adequate cover for a goal scorer like him.

Peter Bell
9 Posted 30/12/2015 at 19:18:47
Anyone remember the Easter programme of 1977

Good Friday : Newcastle 0 Everton 2
Easter Saturday: Everton 2 Derby 0
Easter Monday: Man Utd 1 Everton 2

the same team played and won 3 games in 4 days, and if my memory serves me right, Big Bob Latch scored 5 of the 6 goals.
That's what you call "phenomenal"

Richard Reeves
10 Posted 30/12/2015 at 20:07:19
If Mirallas is still here after the window shuts I will be slightly confused.I can only guess Martinez has been punishing him for something and has decided to keep him injury free for a transfer.

If that is the case I think he should of used him more as he's our second most attacking threat and could of got us a lot more points and also taken some pressure of the team and manager.

I've always wanted to see Mirallas and Deulofeu on either wing as the starting eleven and stick with it.
Kase Chow
11 Posted 30/12/2015 at 20:28:24
Erm, If you rate him, play him.

If you don't then sell him and get a replacement.

But don't keep him and sideline him.

You idiot.

Oliver Molloy
12 Posted 30/12/2015 at 20:35:13
More rubbish spin from our manager, I would bet Mirallas and Lennon would see things very differently!
Phil Sammon
13 Posted 30/12/2015 at 20:39:43
I'd actually given Martinez a bit of leeway on Mirallas. He's a quality player but I'd thought he's attitude has perhaps ruffled the manager who then planned to get rid in January. If that isn't the case then Martinez hasn't been playing him because he doesn't rate him in terms of ability. Now THAT is frigging baffling. We all know he'll get us goals. Madness.
Tony Hill
15 Posted 30/12/2015 at 21:04:53
This is classic Martinez. The words of one who only needs our patience and a sense of perspective to produce something really special.

May God help us all.

Ian Riley
16 Posted 30/12/2015 at 21:13:11
I love our manager. Give him another five year contract!

He could sell snow in Alaska!

Christy Ring
17 Posted 30/12/2015 at 21:51:38
Mark Hughes picked the same Stoke team, 48 hours later against us. Martinez is out of his depth, it's embarrassing.
James Stewart
18 Posted 30/12/2015 at 21:58:25
Deulofeu played in both games and he is a sprinter, Martinez just taking his own fans for idiots with this one.
James Ford
19 Posted 30/12/2015 at 21:58:59
No one else thought Mirallas was garbage boxing day then. In fact when was his last decent game. If he stays past the summer I'll be amazed.
Minik Hansen
20 Posted 30/12/2015 at 22:02:43
This seems he learned from relatively recent injuries, keeping it safe for the good sake of the squad and for the long term. Referring them as sprinters as opposed to Macca, Mirallas and Lennon in their own way give good sprints on many occasions especially the way we're playing now. Deulofeu ain't given 90 mins either, so I believe there's something there.
Ernie Baywood
21 Posted 30/12/2015 at 22:05:30
Maybe it's bull.

But if he'd played him and he'd got injured people would be on here claiming it was obvious not to play him twice considering his recent injury issues.

Manager makes the big decisions and I'll judge him on performances and results. The results are shit.

Steve Hogan
22 Posted 30/12/2015 at 22:06:03
Errr, it's best not to listen to simply anything he says anymore, I'm not even sure he believes what he says himself now.

He may have a mental condition that simply has not been diagnosed yet...nurse..

Oliver Molloy
23 Posted 30/12/2015 at 23:09:38
It's obvious that Martinez will only play Mirallas when he has to. Whatever has gone on between them should be put to one side by the manager.

Mirallas when he got his chance on Boxing Day never set the world alight. On current form Mirallas is not going to get in the side in front of Deulofeu, but should be at least getting the nod ahead of Kone.

I would have more respect for Martinez if just told the feckin truth and stop treating the fans like we are idiots.

Alexander O'Brien
25 Posted 30/12/2015 at 23:56:00
I don't even listen to what Martinez has to say anymore so I just scroll down to the comments, all more or less giving the same opinion. I couldn't care less what players did in training or what types of personalities they are as all I see is what's in front of me on a Saturday afternoon.

Why Mirallas isn't part of a front three in place of Kone I'll never know. Same goes for Robles in for Howard. If either of those two play on Sunday my head will explode!
Terence Leong
29 Posted 31/12/2015 at 04:15:34
At the end of the day, the manager will say what he wants/needs to say, however true it might be.

Still, for discussion sake, the explanations are not incredulous or inexplicable as some say.

e.g. when you have match fitness, you are fitter than someone who has only fitness. For someone who hasn't played a lot of games, to suddenly, play games in quick succession can be a lot to ask, especially when their main weapon is explosive pace.

So, I can accept (to some extent) that Deulofeu and Barry would be able to play successive games better than Mirallas and Lennon. As for McCarthy, I would agree that it was too soon to bring him in (I was surprised to see him start), as I thought that Cleverley would have earned his spot, and they might have started Besic and rested Barry.

As 'luck' would have it, Cleverley came on for McCarthy and then got himself injured.

And Barry continues to be fit and available for duty... after clocking in tremendous mileage.

I would have hoped that Cleverley would have been able to keep his place in the team, so that there is continuity when Barry gets his rest, with Gibson and Besic coming in.

Now, it looks like Barry will have to carry on, as it's unlikely that Gibson (with his injury record) and Besic will be able to play successive games.

Here's hoping that we can give these guys a run, and they can build momentum (time to really use that squad).

Peter Healing
30 Posted 31/12/2015 at 05:46:55
Part-time player who should be on part-time wages.
Harold Matthews
31 Posted 31/12/2015 at 06:17:39
Mirallas has always stood around doing nothing when asked to play twice within a few days. His body is very precious to him.

Lennon, off the bench, would have helped prevent the last two goals.

Kim Vivian
34 Posted 31/12/2015 at 11:12:53
A lesson in how to speak and say about half of something, and I would say it is a very fucking pivotal month for Kevin given he might not even be an Everton player come February.
Terry Downes
35 Posted 31/12/2015 at 13:45:46
Alexander (#22),

In case you haven't watched Everton lately, Kone and Lukaku play better together than Mirallas and Lukaku... it's not rocket science?!?

Barry Pearce
37 Posted 31/12/2015 at 14:01:22
This man talks utter bullshit. He must think all Evertonians are fools. There's only one fool, and we all know who that is.

Like Tony (#14) said... God help us all.

Tony Rutherford
39 Posted 31/12/2015 at 14:12:21
Ernie Baywood, take a bow son! Nearly choked on my chocolate Santa!
Mike Powell
41 Posted 31/12/2015 at 14:31:05
Mirallas just stands around??? Then what does Kone do???

Haha... unbelievable.

Mirallas should start on one wing, Deulofeu on the other... Kone would make a good bucket man.
Simon Hermansen
43 Posted 31/12/2015 at 14:49:32
Even if he believes this, and I assume he does (his physio training and all that), there is no reason why either of these potential match winners couldn't have a least made the bench

Agree that, even with Macca (apparently) fit for the Stoke game, Cleverly should have kept his place and moved over to the left offering a more energetic 'up and down' option than Kone. But hey what do I know.

For Spurs. I'd bring Gibson in alongside Barry cos I think Besic might just be one young/inexperienced player too many. Also Baines, Robles and Mirallas (for Kone). Get Barkley to sit a bit deeper and and I'd also like to see more switching positions up front ... especially like to see Geri in the number 10 position occasionally rather than hugging the right wing where the oppo are getting wise to him.

Gary Edwards
44 Posted 01/01/2016 at 11:15:27
Alex (#23) ... same applies here. I'm completely fed up with Martinez and the nonsense he spouts.

Mirallas is (and always will be) a far better option on the left than Kone, IMO he's also a viable alternative upfront for Rom too as he proved vs Man Utd or the Shite (I forget) a season or two back...

Brin Williams
45 Posted 01/01/2016 at 11:35:01
Harold 26 ' His body is very precious to him.'

Keep them coming.

Paul Cherrington
46 Posted 01/01/2016 at 11:59:23
More rubbish from the manager who is quickly turning into the modern-day Mike Walker (if he wasn't already)... which reminds me of a quote from Big Nev's book re playing under Walker. Seems Nev didn't rate him as he was "more interested in his suntan than football". Sounds like RM to me – although substitute "brown shoes and being nice" for "watch for the suntan".

Mirallas is a class player with agression and pace in him – he should be one of the first names on the teamsheet out wide where he has proved over the years with us he can do it. If I was him, I would be off in January after the manager treating him as he has this season.

Ian Riley
47 Posted 01/01/2016 at 22:12:43
If this is what you call supporting a player Martinez. I would hate to see when you're not!!! Sell him and move on. Don't humiliate him.
Christine Foster
48 Posted 01/01/2016 at 23:06:27
You could read his comments several ways if you wanted to, not a pivotal month could mean the manager has already decided he goes, but not until the end of January... just in case. It really does depend on the insight rather than the words.

BUT one has to say, with the current form of Kone, letting KM go would be criminal folly. Therefore he must be going!!

Tony Farrell
49 Posted 01/01/2016 at 23:16:56
I've just read Timmy Cahill's book Legacy – by the way, a brilliant read.

There's a passage there which reads about the training. Tim says there is quite a difference training in ideal conditions near the Sydney beaches to the freezing wind blowing and rain-soaked atmosphere with the Blues. He would go on to say we would work on defending corners and set-pieces, and Moyes would not let them finish until they had perfected such tasks. And they all knew what each individual had to do to a man, and they did it...

He also says there were players in the side who would kick your arse if you didn't perform. I can see the gulf of difference between our set-up now and then...
David Booth
50 Posted 02/01/2016 at 02:07:04
He's one of our FOUR potential match-winners, along with Barkley, Deulofeu and Lukaku.

All four, every game, for me. Sod whether he/they 'defend' or not.

We don't leave out defenders because they don't attack, so where's all this 'fashionable' nowadays nonsense about not playing attackers who don't defend come from?

Give me the likes of Kevin Mirallas every day of the week, as opposed to square peg utilities like Kone and Naismith.

We are Everton are we not?

Play like it then!

Steven Jones
51 Posted 02/01/2016 at 12:10:15
We have a lot of games in a short space of time.

RM is spot-on here. Those who slag off whatever he says demonstrate lack of football knowledge, especially recovery time for recently injured players.

Mirallas has had injuries and niggles and needs to be carefully managed – less than 48 hours is too short for him right now. Same as Lennon who has been out with muscle injuries that would need time to really heal.

It was obvious Gerri was benched with Stoke in mind and Barks taken off early as well. It isn't rocket science, guys...

Jim Jennings
52 Posted 02/01/2016 at 12:38:50
Harold makes a subtle but very relevant point about Mirallas putting his body on the line. The player himself has spoken about how he has struggled throughout his career with being mentally right to get enough consistency in his game.

Moyes even questioned whether he was doing enough to adapt to the physical demands of the Premier League and was signalling to come off in many games. He stopped short of saying that it was all in his head.

I just wonder whether it's reached a point where Martinez has come to a conclusion that he cannot rely on him longer term.

Steve Davies
53 Posted 02/01/2016 at 13:23:06
I have to say that the combination of Kone, Lukaku and Gerry seems to work. I wouldn't be in a rush to change it.

Kone does waste a lot of goal scoring opportunities and the amount of time the people around me in the Gwladys that are shouting 'Have a dig' three or four times in a match have got it spot on. He will never be a goal machine. However, the reality is that he does set up Lukaku who is a goal machine.

The problem is the goalkeeper and the defense. That is the issue our Spanish Messiah must address. However, history – and I will always suggest history will give you an indication of the future – suggests that RM has an appalling record in the defensive department at every team he has been at. He never learns and his kamikaze attitude continues to astound me. He once lost the last home game for Swansea 3-6 to Blackpool and hence they missed out on the playoffs? Regardless of losing, it must have been a phenomenal game...

When he played he was a defensive midfielder. Maybe he wanted to be a striker but never got a chance? Hence that may shape his outlook, but I have long tried to work out this man.

Again, if Howard is picked against Spurs (and I don't wish to use him as a scapegoat as the defense have been poor), the manager picks the team, then I honestly think Martinez is sticking up two fingers at all of us OR is just plain incompetent.

Listening to TalkSport earlier, Micky Quinn suggests that there may be goals in this one (EFC v Spurs) and there will not be a clean sheet. There is a surprise. I know he follows the shite but when he interviewed RM and asked the obvious questions about EFC's poor defensive record, RM totally evaded the issues....

RM may not be much of a football manager but he is one hell of a politician (ie, spoofer).

William Cartwright
54 Posted 02/01/2016 at 17:23:49
Of course Mirallas is not playing for his future... He is not playing at all!
Tony Abrahams
55 Posted 03/01/2016 at 21:46:26
Not his biggest fan, but I think you nailed it with that post, William.

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