Everton: Roberto Martinez issues Eagles warning

Roberto Martinez Everton manager

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Roberto Martinez has warned his Everton players against complacency ahead of their crucial game in hand clash against Crystal Palace at Goodison Park on Wednesday night.

The Toffees chief has seen his side win their last seven Premier League games to move ahead of Arsenal in the fight to secure a top-four finish and qualification for next season’s Champions League.

Everton could be back down to fifth spot by the time the match against Palace gets under way because Arsenal are in action against West Ham at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday. A win for Arsene Wenger’s Gunners will see them usurp the Merseysiders for 24 hours at least.

After this week both sides will have four games remaining and if Everton win then they will have a fourth-place finish in their own hands regardless of what Arsenal do.

However, despite acknowledging his side have the “momentum” and “confidence” going into Wednesday’s game as they look to make it 10 homes wins on the bounce in all competitions, Martinez has urged his players to be cautious when going up against Tony Pulis’s side.

Palace arrive on the back of three straight wins which has virtually guaranteed Premier League safety for the season and Martinez said on Evertontv: “The welcome the players are going to have in front of our fans is going to be special.

“We’ve got the highest Premier League points tally in the club’s history [66] and I think the players deserve that sort of welcome. It’s going to be a really difficult game and we need to be well rested and well prepared.

“And we need that support, because Crystal Palace are one of the toughest sides in the division in terms of their defensive focus and how good they are in their defensive intensity.”

Everton are 1.40 to defeat Palace, who are 7.63 while the draw is 4.45.

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