Europe no excuse for Everton defender Phil Jagielka

Everton Phil Jagielka

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Everton defender Phil Jagielka refuses to blame their European excursions for their poor form in the Premier League.

The Toffees have performed well in Europe this season and are the only English team left in the Europa League going into the first leg of their last-16 clash with Dynamo Kyiv at Goodison Park on Thursday.

In contrast Roberto Martinez’ side have struggled for any kind of form domestically and have only won one of their last 12 matches in the league, a sequence of results that stretches back to December 15.

The Blues now find themselves on the cusp of a relegation battle as they sit just six points above the relegation zone.

Centre back Jagielka however believes that the extra workload that comes with having a good run in European competition is no excuse for their poor performances in the league.

He said: “If we want to go and play Champions League football, play European football regularly and go far in these competitions, then we need to expect this many games per season.”

The England international believes his side have shown the right attitude throughout their European campaign and they will be going all out for victory again on Thursday.

He continued: “Europe has not been a bad place for us and we know we need to go out and put a shift in, but it is a challenge. We’ve gone quite far in the Europa League because we’ve shown ourselves to be up for the challenge.”

The Toffees are 12.00 to go on and lift the Europa League title in May but know they must also be wary of their league form as they are available at 26.00 to be relegated this season.

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