Lyon vs Everton - David Unsworth: Everton will go for it against Lyon

Posted Thursday, November 02, 2017 by PA

Caretaker boss David Unsworth has stressed Everton can still make the last 32 of the Europa League and will be "giving it everything to win" Thursday's Group E clash with Lyon.

The Toffees go into the match at the Groupama Stadium lying bottom of the pool with just one point from three games.

And if they lose to Lyon, who beat them at Goodison Park a fortnight ago, and Atalanta avoid defeat at Apollon Limassol, Everton's hopes of qualifying for the next round will be over.

Unsworth said on Wednesday: "We've got an uphill task but it's not impossible, and when something is not impossible, we go for it.

"I certainly want to go for it tomorrow and win the game, and hopefully we can win the last two games as well.

"We're really looking forward to the game and I can assure you we will be giving it everything to win it."

Everton's domestic struggles see them sitting 18th in the Premier League ahead of Sunday's home encounter with Watford.

Asked how important the Europa League was for the club at the moment, Unsworth, who has opted to rest Wayne Rooney, Leighton Baines and Phil Jagielka for Thursday's match, said: "It is very important to us because we've got 3,000 Everton fans coming over to watch us tomorrow.

"That's really important to me and I know it's important to the players.

"I'll pick a team to try to win a game of football and I know our players will give everything for our fans coming over."

On Rooney, Baines and Jagielka, he added: "We just wanted to freshen it up, with one eye on Sunday as well.

"It's a great opportunity for a few other players to come in and give me a (selection) problem going into Sunday."

Thursday's game will be Everton's third since under-23s boss Unsworth took temporary charge following the sacking of Ronald Koeman.

While Unsworth, who has so far overseen two losses - at Chelsea in the Carabao Cup and Leicester in the league - would like the job full-time, former England manager Sam Allardyce and Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo are the latest names being linked with the Merseyside outfit.

When asked on Wednesday what more had been said to him about the possibility of him becoming Koeman's permanent successor, Unsworth said: "Nothing more.

"I've spoken to the chairman (Bill Kenwright) two or three times every day and I spoke to Farhad (Moshiri, Everton's major shareholder) last Friday, and nothing more has been said.

"We just carry on day by day, game by game. Hopefully we'll be able to sit down after Sunday's game, in the international break. What we want is the best resolution for Everton Football Club, and I certainly want that myself.

"I haven't had time to look or see whoever is being linked with the job. I'm just working so hard with the staff and the players to try to win some football matches, and that is my only focus."

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