Roberto Martinez taking extra measures to protect Everton players

Tottenham  0 Everton 0

A club statement last week confirmed Everton’s stance that Stones is not for sale and the visiting supporters’ chant of ‘money can’t buy me Stones’ to the old Beatles tune reinforced the view the Merseyside club would find it extremely difficult to backtrack.

In a game where defences dominated, the young centre-back performed with an assurance which belied the fact he has been forced to move into a hotel following his decision to submit a transfer request in a bid to secure a move to Stamford Bridge.

Martinez is now concerned about the risk of a similar saga being staged in future windows and intends to introduce measures to limit the noise generated by those trying to unsettle his players.

“We are going to take extra measures in every window from now on to protect players because it is all becoming too much.

“We have to make sure that we are always around for these players, that there is always someone around for them to talk to. That players can spend time with them that they can talk about everything going on to make sure that they feel protected.”

Mauricio Pochettinohas problems of his own, in particular Harry Kane’s failure so far to reach the heights he attained last season.

Son Heung-min, the £22 million signing from Bayer Leverkusen, was paraded before kick-off and should provide much needed support alongside Kane but against Everton, the England forward too often looked isolated.

Eric Dier’s performance in central midfield offered a positive for Pochettino and the youngster is convinced Tottenham’s fortunes will soon change. “I think this was our best performance of the season if you don’t count not scoring the chances,” he said.

TOTTENHAM (4-2-3-1): Lloris 7; Walker 6, Alderweireld 7, Vertonghen 8, Rose 7; Dier 8, Bentaleb 7; Dembele 4 (Alli 53,6), Mason 6 (Pritchard 85, 6), Chadli 5; Kane 5.

EVERTON(4-2-3-1): Howard 9; Coleman 6, Stones 7, Jagielka 8, Oviedo 7; Barry 7, McCarthy 7; Kone 5 (Deulofeu 84, 6), Barkley 7, Cleverley 6 (Mirallas 45,5); Lukaku 5 (Naismith 69,6).

Referee: Mike Jones

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