Monday, November 26, 2012
David Moyes warned his Everton players it is time to wise up after letting another Premier League win slip through their grasp.
Sebastien Bassong’s 90th-minute header infuriated the Scot after watching his side lose to Reading the previous weekend following another Steven Naismith opening goal.
“The most important thing in football is winning. You can play with whatever style you like, you can have as many passes and as much possession as you like but the only thing that matters to me is winning,” he said.
“A couple of our last games have been like that where we have been disappointed not to go on and win them and this was the same. For most of the game it looked like we were going to see it out and get the result.
“You have to give Norwich credit. Look at their defensive record of late and you can see they are making it hard for teams to score goals.
“They did the same to us, albeit around midway through the second half I felt we looked more likely to get that second goal and finish it off. The opportunities came and we didn’t take them.”
Moyes did little to try and absolve Tim Howard and John Heitinga of blame for Norwich’s equaliser, beyond disputing the initial award of the free kick where Leighton Baines was adjudged to have felled Steve Morison.
“No, I don’t think it was a free-kick. I thought he mis-kicked the ball,” he said. “I think he (Howard) should have come for it. The ball was in the air long enough. I was disappointed with the decision on the free-kick and I was disappointed with how we defended it after that with Tim and Johnny.
“That was pretty hard to take, but Norwich were always in the game when it was only 1-0. It’s the nature of the Premier League, and that was the case in the second half.”
Moyes was equally upset at Everton’s failure to build on Naismith’s sharp 12th-minute strike after Bryan Oviedo escaped Steven Whittaker’s attentions.
“I thought we played well for the first 25, 30 minutes. We had started well and controlled the game,” he said. “Norwich grew into the game, but I actually thought we had just got through that spell and we probably looked more likely to make it 2-0 than them actually equalise.
“Maybe we didn’t create enough opportunities. Steven had a great chance to square it to (Nikica) Jelavic, there was a bit of good combination play where Ossie (Leon Osman) gets in and there is another when the keeper parries one and we don’t pick it up, so we had one or two opportunities.”
Moyes’ scope to tilt the game in the hosts’ favour was hindered to an extent by the combined absence of Marouane Fellaini, through suspension, and captain Phil Neville through injury after knee surgery that will sideline him until January..
“It was a difficult one for us because we didn’t have an awful lot to alter it,” he said. “We probably wouldn’t have started with it the way it was, we were a bit short at right-back, we were short in forward areas so it left us changing things around a little bit but you wouldn’t have thought in the first 20 to 25 minutes it had much effect.
“You need competition for places and we didn’t have that today. We couldn’t make too many changes so we had to stick with what we got. There were some positive things, but there was an awful lot of things we have to improve on.
“It was always going to be a tough game. Norwich have played well and had some good results and also with what we had available to us, it was always going to be tight, the game. I couldn’t see us winning it comfortably. I also knew if we were chasing it we didn’t have enough to chase it with, so that was a fact.”