Everton's Tim Howard responds to recent criticism of his form

Tim Howard USA

The Everton goalkeeper suggests that statistics will indicate he is performing well, while suggesting criticism from the fans and the media doesn't matter.

Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard has told Goal that criticism from the fans and media doesn't really mean anything after recently being under fire for his form at his club.

Criticism of Howard gathered pace after his role in the two goals the Toffees conceded in a 2-1 defeat to Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium last month, with some fans voicing their concerns about the American's form, and his suitability to be the club's number one goalkeeper.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has stood by Howard, despite an impressive display in the League Cup from Joel Robles shortly afterwards, and he has urged his critics to look at statistics.

He said: “With all due respect, the criticism from fans and media doesn’t mean anything.

“I think that, for players, it gets blown out of proportion. Strong-willed, good players don’t buy into that nonsense.

“It’s water off my back. It’s not something I concern myself with. I think what critics need to be more concerned with is the stats.

“I think you have to look at where I stack up with the other goalkeepers in the Premier League, and I’ll let that speak for the story. I’m not overly concerned with that."

One feels that these comments won't go down too well with supporters. Statistics don't necessarily tell the entire story. It doesn't take into account positioning, commanding your penalty area which can all lead to goals conceded.

To say that criticism from fans doesn't mean anything is far from true. They are after all the life-blood of any football club and if certain key figures in the side lose backing from the fans, it can make for an uncomfortable atmosphere for several parties.

On the subject of statistics, here is a look at a selection of statistics comparing Premier League goalkeepers this season who have played the bulk of Premier League games for their side:

  TeamSaves per gameHigh Claims per gameCrosses not Claimed per gameCross Claim %Saves from inside box per gameSaves from outside box per gameError Lead To ShotClean SheetAppearancesMins Played
Jack Butland Stoke 4.17 1.25 0.08 100% 2.5 1.67 0 4 12 1,080
Tim Krul Newcastle 4.13 0.88 0 100% 2.25 1.88 0 1 8 720
Costel Pantilimon Sunderland 4 1.67 0.08 95% 1.75 2.25 0 1 12 1,080
Tim Howard Everton 3.83 1.25 0.33 100% 2.17 1.67 0 3 12 1,080
Petr Cech Arsenal 3.5 1.25 0.17 93% 1.92 1.58 1 6 12 1,080
Adrián West Ham 3.44 1.11 0.11 90% 2.33 1 0 1 9 809
Brad Guzan Aston Villa 3.25 2.08 0 96% 1.83 1.42 0 2 12 1,080
Asmir Begovic Chelsea 3.1 1.3 0.1 100% 2.4 0.7 0 2 10 846
Boaz Myhill West Brom 3.08 1.42 0.08 94% 1.33 1.75 0 6 12 1,080
Lukasz Fabianski Swansea 3 2.75 0 91% 1.5 1.5 0 2 12 1,080
Kasper Schmeichel Leicester 3 1 0.17 100% 1.67 1.33 0 1 12 1,080
David de Gea Man Utd 2.88 0.13 0.25 100% 2.38 0.5 0 5 8 720
Heurelho Gomes Watford 2.83 2 0.08 100% 1.67 1.17 0 5 12 1,080
Hugo Lloris Tottenham 2.82 0.91 0.09 90% 1.55 1.27 1 4 11 990
John Ruddy Norwich 2.58 2 0.33 92% 1.67 0.92 1 1 12 1,080
Simon Mignolet Liverpool 2.08 1.08 0.08 92% 1.08 1 1 4 12 1,080
Artur Boruc Bournemouth 1.78 1.78 0 81% 1.44 0.33 0 1 9 810
Maarten Stekelenburg Southampton 1.45 0.91 0 80% 0.73 0.64 0 5 11 990
Joe Hart Man City 1.36 1.82 0.18 95% 0.91 0.45 0 7 11 990

It seems that Howard is certainly one of the busiest in the league as he averages just under four saves per game, but one would look at the names lower down the list and feel it's because the Toffees defence is perhaps not as tight as other sides - which would be reflected in the amount of clean sheets they have kept - and Howard sits in mid-table in this regard.

When it comes to cross not claimed in a game - something which Howard received criticism for in games against both Arsenal and Liverpool - he is the joint highest along with John Ruddy - though his perfect record of claiming crosses could indicate it's his decision making more than anything that is in the firing line.

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