Jags admits to cup pressure
Phil Jagielka admits Tuesday's defeat to Liverpool puts even more pressure on Everton to bounce back against Sunderland in the FA Cup.
By Tom Mallows
Last Updated: 14/03/12 4:23pm
Everton defender Phil Jagielka admits Tuesday's 3-0 defeat to Liverpool puts even more pressure on the side to bounce back against Sunderland in Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final.
Despite going into the game unbeaten in nine games, Toffees boss David Moyes opted to make six changes from the side that beat Tottenham last weekend, with the likes of Tim Cahill, Royston Drenthe and Nikica Jelavic all starting from the bench.
However, the plan backfired with Reds skipper Steven Gerrard grabbing a hat-trick in a comfortable 3-0 victory for Kenny Dalglish's men.
Moyes revealed after the game that his team selection was made with the upcoming cup match against the Black Cats in mind, with the Scot desperate to mark a decade in charge at Goodison Park with a trophy.
Defender Jagielka was one of those recalled for Tuesday's encounter and he admits the defeat piles more pressure on what is already a huge clash against Martin O'Neill's resurgent Sunderland at Gooodison next weekend.
"The boys have been doing really well and I am sure the gaffer will put those lads [back] in for the weekend and we will be able to continue the good cup run we have had," said the 29-year-old.
"But after the result it puts a bit more pressure on the cup because 3-0 isn't good enough.
"It was a big game for us and a lot of us got a chance to play but it didn't really work out very well.
"Hopefully the gaffer picks a good enough team to win on Saturday and that will cheer the fans up."
Despite the convincing-looking scoreline Jagielka felt his side did not deserve to be on the end of a 3-0 defeat.
The former Sheffield United defender instead rued defensive lapses at crucial times, which Liverpool ruthlessly capitalised on.
"I didn't think we did that bad, we just killed ourselves with the way we conceded goals," he told the club's official website.
"We conceded goals at the wrong times. We weathered the storm at the start of the first half but got done on the counter attack.
"It's always about the timing of the goals and if it is 1-0 for a while you are still in it.
"They scored at the start of the second half which pretty much took the wind out of our sails. Then we were chasing the game towards the end and we conceded a third.
"Maybe a little bit of inexperience crept in but 3-0 is not a good result."