Ashley Williams has told Sky Sports that Everton's players feel responsible for the sacking of Ronald Koeman after a depressing start to the 2017-18 campaign.
Koeman was sacked after Everton plummeted into the Premier League relegation zone, while their chances of qualifying from Group E of the Europa League look slim after losses to Lyon, Atalanta and a draw against Apollon Limassol.
Interim boss David Unsworth has failed to turn the tide in his two matches in the Everton dugout, suffering losses to Chelsea and Leicester City and will be desperate to put that right against Lyon on Thursday night.
Williams claimed that the Everton players are hurting after Koeman's sacking, but admits that the Toffees squad must take responsibility as they languish dangerously at the bottom of the table.
"I think it hurts, definitely. He [Koeman] was someone that we all liked," Williams said. "You feel responsible when you're a player and you're going out there.
"It's always disappointing when a manager loses his job. You do take responsibility for that. I think the results show that we have let each other down so far - we feel we can turn it around."
The Toffees must beat Lyon in France if they are to stand any chance of gaining a place in the last 32 of the Europa League after Christmas, with Lyon on five points and Atalanta on seven.
It remains to be seen who will replace Koeman in the dugout, with Sean Dyche, Sam Allardyce and Unsworth himself all said to be in the running.