Koeman suggests why Everton have struggled this season

Ronald Koeman

Southampton face Everton this weekend with both teams desperate to pick up three points.

Roberto Martinez has a fan in visiting Southampton manager Ronald Koeman, with the Dutch legend praising former Wigan boss for the playing style he has adopted since taking over at Goodison Park in comments on the Everton website.  

Koeman will take his high-flying Southampton side to the Blues this weekend mindful of the fact Roberto Martinez may just have turned around a disappointing Premier League season for the Toffees.

Two games won in a row by the Merseyside club should have put to bed any nervous glances towards the relegation battle, with Everton nine points clear and likely looking upwards again rather than behind them.

Southampton themselves are unbeaten in three games, and remain in with a shot of Champions League football as they try and claw back Manchester United's six-point gap over the chasing pack.

Dutch legend Koeman said that he thought Martinez's side should be higher up the league, before suggesting that Everton's foray into the Europa League this season may have played a part in their disappointing domestic form.

“It’s a tough test and I think Everton deserve a higher position on the table because I like the way they play football," the Saints coach said.

“I like the way how Martinez is doing his job. They have good individual qualities in the squad, [but it has been] a difficult season for them.

“I think one of the reasons is because they played Europa League on Thursday. There is a risk to have more players injured and to travel, the focus - it’s more difficult after that great season what they had last season."

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