Leighton Baines delivers damning verdict on Everton squad

Leighton Baines

The Toffees defender claims there is no chemistry within the club's ranks.

Everton defender Leighton Baines has served up a brutally honest assessment of the club's squad, telling the Liverpool Echo that there is noticeable lack of chemistry on the pitch.

The Toffees slumped to a third successive defeat with a toothless 1-0 defeat at Manchester United on Sunday to leave them 12th in the table with only weeks remaining of another disappointing campaign.

Baines started at left-back for Roberto Martinez's side in that loss, only his 15th appearance of a season which has been hampered by niggling injury problems.

The 31-year-old returned to fitness at the start of March and has worked his way back into the side, but he has risked the wrath of Martinez by claiming that the club's troubles are due in no small part to a lack of chemistry within the team.

He told the Echo: "I just don’t feel as though the chemistry is quite there with the team on the pitch at the moment, and it hasn’t been for a while.

"We are maybe leaning too heavily on individuals to come up with something. We’re in games, we were in the game on Sunday and had a couple of chances, but we’re not performing as a team to the level we know we can or we should be.

"Results have an impact on that because chemistry and confidence go hand in hand. Look at the teams who are having success this year and you’d say they have chemistry. If I had to say one thing, I just don’t know if it’s there with us at the moment, for whatever reason."

Baines may be right to suggest that the club are relying too heavily on individuals - top scorer Romelu Lukaku and influential midfielder Ross Barkley have between them scored over half of the club's Premier League goals this season.

Whatever the cause, Everton need to find a way to turn their fortunes around before the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley later this month.

That may be easier said than done, however, with captain Phil Jagielka admitting after Sunday's defeat at Old Trafford that he is unsure as to what is the solution to the club's problems.

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