Report: Martinez backs Joel Robles to be the difference against West Ham

Everton Goodison 2

Everton manager Roberto Martinez is backing Joel Robles to excel if the FA Cup replay against West Ham goes to penalties.

Roberto Martinez has told the Liverpool Echo that he has complete confidence in the ability of Everton goalkeeper Joel Robles.

The 24-year-old has found himself thrust into the spotlight after an injury to Tim Howard and he’s likely to start again this evening for the FA Cup replay against West Ham United.

Should the match be level after 90 minutes, that opens up extra time and the possibility of penalties, with Martinez confident that his goalkeeper can make the difference in that situation.

“Penalties are one of his strengths. He always practices in training and he has a bit of a knack for those moments,” Martinez told the Liverpool Echo.

“Emotionally he is perfect. He is not someone who gets too affected. He doesn’t see it as a torrid time. As a goalkeeper sees it as an opportunity to become a hero.”

Fingers crossed for Everton that Robles won’t be put in the position where he has to make the difference in terms of facing penalties.

The 1-1 draw at Goodison Park gave an indication of how well matched Everton and West Ham are, despite their different positions in the Premier League table.

Cup ties often caused extra nerves because they are higher pressure situations, whereas the league often provides another game for a side to react after a bad result or to cash in after a positive one.

Robles will also have a big role to play this evening because he plays at the back of the team and can see play unfolding and react, organising the Everton defence as he sees fit.

Only one team has conceded more goals in the Premier League this evening, which would suggest that while there is plenty of pace and talent in the Toffees attack, Robles is not going to be able to take his eye off the ball at any point.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch