Everton V Chelsea at Goodison Park: LIVE

12 March 2016 05:44
Everton V Chelsea - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Roberto Martinez: Judge Everton at the end of the season

Everton boss Roberto Martinez has reiterated his belief the club's season should only be assessed once it has come to an end.

Martinez has faced, and rejected, accusations this term his side are underachieving.

But last weekend's 3-2 home loss to West Ham appeared only to add further validity to such criticism of the Toffees, who are 12th with 10 games left in the Barclays Premier League and were beaten in the Capital One Cup semi-finals.

Ahead of Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final against Chelsea at Goodison Park, Martinez was asked once more for his thoughts on suggestions Everton should be doing better than they are given the talent in their squad.

And he replied by repeating an assertion he made earlier in the campaign, saying: "I think when you want to assess what you have done in a season, you have to wait until the end of it.

"At that point, you can look into very specific details - how you have been on the ball, your attacking work, what you have done defensively, what you have done away from home, what you have done at home.

"You can go into every single detail - nowadays everything gets recorded and the stats are there.

"But, clearly, if you want to assess any season, you have to wait until the end."

Many may argue Everton's season will be as good as over this weekend if they lose - as they have done in three of their last four home games, and in seven home league matches overall this season.

Martinez acknowledged before the West Ham defeat that the Toffees' results on their own turf have not been good enough.

But he has also spoken in a confident manner about the prospect of his side - who it is expected will be watched from the stands by the club's new investor Farhad Moshiri - rising to the occasion on Saturday.

"The squad has always reacted with bravery and responsibility," Martinez said.

"We are looking to make sure we embrace being in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.

"We have already been to the semi-finals of the League Cup, which I think gives us the inspiration to be able to perform well at this sort of stage of a competition."

Everton did record a home victory in September against a Chelsea side who have had a troubled campaign themselves.

Since that last visit to Goodison Park the London club have changed managers, with Jose Mourinho being replaced by Guus Hiddink - the man who guided them to an FA Cup final victory over Everton in 2009.

Hiddink has helped revive Chelsea this season, although they did suffer the second defeat of his current tenure on Wednesday when a reverse against Paris St Germain sent them out of the Champions League.

Martinez said: "It depends how you want to look at it - if you are being pessimistic (from Everton's point of view), you'll say Chelsea will now be focusing on the FA Cup.

"If you are being optimistic, you'll say maybe they won't have a feel-good factor after Wednesday's result.

"The reality is they are an outstanding team and we all know what they have achieved since Guus Hiddink has come back."

Chelsea interim boss Hiddink has "concerns" about Eden Hazard's fitness and form.

Hazard was booed as he was substituted with a hip and groin problem during Wednesday night's Champions League exit to Paris St Germain, when his half-time shirt swap with Angel Di Maria invited the fans' fury.

The Belgium playmaker's father Thierry told Belgian newspaper Le Soir that Hazard has had the injury for up to four months - it first occurred under Jose Mourinho, whom Hiddink replaced in December - but has had to play on.

Hiddink says Hazard is "desperate" to feature in Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final at Everton.

"His father made a fair judgement. He is not absent of injury," Hiddink said.

"What is an injury? You can have an injury where you cannot play, or where you can play when you are not fully fit.

"I have my concerns about him as well: whether he should play, when he's not top, top fit, an hour at full intensity or another part of the game (as a substitute). We're trying to help him."

Striker Diego Costa is undergoing treatment for a hip problem which forced him off against PSG and is a doubt for the trip to Everton, but captain John Terry will return to contention after a six-match absence with a hamstring problem.

Hiddink said: "He worked rather well the past days. I would like him to travel to Liverpool."

Terry scored an equaliser in the eighth minute of stoppage time to earn a 3-3 draw with Everton in January's Premier League clash at Stamford Bridge.

The defender lifted the FA Cup in 2009 during Hiddink's first caretaker spell as manager and the Blues boss is eager for further success in the competition, but not at expense of climbing further up the Premier League table from 10th position.

"It's a very important cup to go for," Hiddink said. "But you have to focus also on the Premier League and not neglect that."

Source: PAR