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Everton V Stoke at Goodison Park : Match Preview

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Updated 29 Mar 2013 16:31:25

Everton V Stoke at Goodison Park : Match Preview

Everton V Stoke - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.


Moyes relaxed over contract

Everton boss David Moyes insists he will not destabilise the club despite wanting to make sure conditions are right before committing his future to Goodison Park.

Moyes, who has been in charge for the past 11 years, is out of contract in the summer but does not intend to make a decision on a new deal until the end of the season.

Chairman Bill Kenwright admitted this week that is not ideal for the club but he respects the Scot's wishes and hopes a new contract can be signed after the last game.

He added that he has already rebuffed enquiries about a potential vacancy, saying there is no other man he wants, but if Moyes was to leave he would do so "with his head held high".

Moyes wants to make sure he will have the wherewithal to revamp his squad to prevent stagnation but is pleased to hear Kenwright's complimentary remarks.

Moyes, speaking at a press conference to preview this weekend's clash with Stoke, said: "I am delighted, from the chairman especially.

"Being at Everton is something I would be really happy with.

"But we have been talking for a long time now, three or four months and everyone nudges along a little bit further every time we speak.

"As I have said, we will conclude that at the end of the season.

"What I am trying to do is make sure I give Everton the best chance of going forward. I wouldn't want it any other way.

"I would never do anything, in any way, to jeopardise Everton or the football club.

"I want to make sure the supporters see a promising, fresh-looking team for the seasons to come.

"We have to make sure the finances we have give us the opportunity to do that.

"We have a small squad, and in truth we have an ageing squad as well, which we need to look at.

"I need to be capable of being able to make those changes for the best of Everton.

"We are well aware of where we are at this moment in time. I have always said that where we finish, what we do at the end of the season - that will be a better time for us to make a decision than just now."

Everton could welcome back goalkeeper Tim Howard and defender Phil Jagielka for the clash against Stoke.

Howard (back) and Jagielka (ankle) have both missed the Toffees' last three games.

Midfielders Marouane Fellaini and Steven Pienaar are both beginning two-match suspensions and defender Tony Hibbert (calf) is still sidelined.

Meanwhile, Stoke manager Tony Pulis is calling for greater concentration from his players in away games.

Ahead of the Goodison Park clash, the Potters have lost five successive top-flight away fixtures and managed only one win in their last 24, a sequence stretching back to January 2012.

Those statistics are in stark contrast to their record at home, where they have been beaten just twice in 22 league matches.

Pulis insists his side - currently 11th in the table - have generally performed well on the road this term and that they have frequently not been rewarded with the results they deserve.

He does, however, believe they need to do better in ensuring they maintain their focus for the entire duration of away contests.

Pulis said: "From the first game of the season, where we played at Reading (a 1-1 draw) and they scored a late penalty, to the last away game at Newcastle (a 2-1 defeat), where we should have been home and hosed (but conceded two goals towards the end), we have managed to shoot ourselves in the foot.

"We have done that continuously.

"Every time away from home, it is about concentration levels as much as anything.

"In the Premier League, if you switch off for two minutes or do something silly, nine times out of 10, you get caught.

"So concentration levels are vital, although it is also important they enjoy themselves - make sure they go out there and express themselves, and work really hard."

Stoke have Robert Huth back available after the defender completed a three-match suspension.

Huth, who served the ban after accepting a violent conduct charge from the Football Association relating to an incident in the Potters' 1-0 defeat at Fulham last month, is expected to make an immediate return to the starting XI, linking up once again with his centre-half partner Ryan Shawcross.


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