Ancelotti: Everton will improve for Villa rematch

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has promised his side will improve on their recent poor performance against Aston Villa when they meet again on Thursday.

Anwar El Ghazi scored the winner for Villa in the 80th minute as Everton suffered a 2-1 defeat at Goodison Park on May 1, but Ancelotti insists the desire to secure European football next season will ensure they up their game in the return match – live on Sky Sports.

Thursday 13th May 5:00pm

Kick off 6:00pm

Sky Sports Premier League HD
Sky Sports Premier League HD

“We have to play differently, it was one of the worst performances of the season, and we are going to play differently,” said Ancelotti, whose team went on to win 1-0 at West Ham on Sunday, at his press conference on Wednesday.

“I counted 10 easy mistakes in the first 10 minutes, easy passes wrong, we lost duels, we were not in position. That is not going to happen tomorrow, for sure.

“The team has strong motivation for Europe, most of them didn’t play in European competition and they have a desire to be in the competition next season.

“The last game [West Ham victory] was good, it was unpredictable against Aston Villa, it was at home and an important game.

“We will play differently tomorrow, no doubt.

“The game is vital, as was the game against West Ham, we know this and, hopefully, the team can repeat the performance from Sunday.”

Victory at Villa Park would see the Toffees equal the 12 away matches won by Howard Kendall’s 1984/85 champions.

Ancelotti will be without Colombian duo James Rodriguez and Yerry Mina on Thursday, although both could return for Sunday’s game against Sheffield United.

Rodriguez has missed the last two games after pulling up injured during the warm-up prior to the Villa defeat.

preview image


FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Everton’s win against West Ham in the Premier League

Defender Mina was forced off just after the hour mark against West Ham having felt a muscle problem.

“I think he [Rodriguez] starts to train with the team Friday, after the game, so I hope Friday and Saturday he trains properly and he can play against Sheffield United,” added Ancelotti.

“He is pain free now, he has no problem, but he didn’t train with the squad and so I cannot put him at risk tomorrow.”

As for Mina, he said: “It is not a big problem. He was out, he tried to train yesterday but he was a little bit uncomfortable. I hope to recover him for the game against Sheffield United.”