Lawrenson slams naive Everton, doubts Martinez spending, predicts Manchester United result

FA Cup

Mark Lawrenson believes Everton will lose 2-1 to Manchester United today.

Pundit Mark Lawrenson has told BBC Sport that he thinks Everton will be beaten by Manchester United in this evening's FA Cup semi-final clash at Wembley.

The Toffees enter the game in dire form, having gone seven Premier League games without a victory - a run which has piled the pressure on manager Roberto Martinez.

Now approaching three years in the job at Goodison Park, Spaniard Martinez appears to be taking Everton backwards rather than forwards, and the 4-0 midweek defeat to Merseyside rivals Liverpool was another terrible evening for the Toffees.

Today, Martinez has the chance to ease some of the mounting pressure on him by claiming an FA Cup semi-final win over Manchester United, whose manager Louis van Gaal is also desperately trying to keep his job.

Ahead of the game, pundit Mark Lawrenson has been speaking to BBC Sport about the clash - and tipped Manchester United to win the game 2-1.

Lawrenson believes that Everton were 'seriously naive' during their defeat against Liverpool, as whilst they should have made things difficult for Jurgen Klopp's men, they were simply too open.

Lawrenson also doesn't think manager Martinez will be given money to spend by new investor Farhad Moshiri, before looking at the future of Manchester United boss Van Gaal, as managerial situations dominate this game.

"I think Everton were seriously naive in Wednesday's Merseyside derby defeat," said Lawrenson. "Even before they won that game 4-0, Liverpool had scored four goals in each of their last two home games. So it was time for Toffees boss Roberto Martinez to play a 4-5-1 and tell his players to start scrapping. Instead, they made it far too easy for the Reds, who could have been four or five up at half-time, and it was embarrassing for Everton."

"It seems Martinez's biggest problem is with the Everton fans. Rightly or wrongly, lots of supporters have decided they are not having him. If you are running that football club, you are going to take that into consideration. Will the new owner Farhad Moshiri let Martinez spend his money in the summer? I very much doubt it."

"I don't think United boss Louis van Gaal has changed the way his side play, but there was a little bit more urgency about them in their win over Crystal Palace on Wednesday. Van Gaal's future is in doubt even if he wins the FA Cup, though. For me, he needs a top-four finish and Champions League football to keep his job," he added.

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