Everton defensive stalwart and captain Phil Jagielka has called for his team to show strength and character in the coming weeks, having hit a patch of rough form in recent times, as reported by the Daily Mirror.
The defender scored a stunner in the closing minutes of Everton’s clash with fierce rivals Liverpool, cancelling out an earlier strike by veteran midfielder Steven Gerrard.
Jagielka has only scored seven goals in his last seven seasons of football, but lined up a perfect shot, volleying a ball that travelled out of the Liverpool box perfectly, beating the flailing Belgian goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.
Having scored the strike, Jagielka explained the reasoning behind taking the chance: “There was an opportunity about five minutes before when I elected to pass.
“So, I thought, if one comes across again I’ll swing one at it and, thankfully, the swinging worked.”
He also had some words of encouragement for the rest of the team, who have had inconsistent form since the new season began, in contrast to last season when they put together an unlikely Champions League challenge.
Jagielka said: “It’s been a frustrating season so far and to go one-nil down and keep knocking at the door the way we did shows tremendous character.
“We’ve got to make sure we keep the character strong as right now we’re not picking up the right results.
“A point is decent, but we’d have loved all three.”