Moyes wants focus returned to Everton

David Moyes wants the focus be turned back on his players ahead of Everton's final home game against West Ham on Sunday.

Manager David Moyes of Everton in the game against Arsenal

It seems a forlorn hope.

The attention has been on Moyes ever since he emerged as the favourite to succeed Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United and now the switch has been confirmed, the Scot will be centre stage for his final game at Goodison Park.

It is not the way he wants it, though.

With outside hopes of a European place still remaining, and a Premier League finish ahead of Liverpool already confirmed, Moyes feels his players are the one for whom credit is most deserved.

"I would hate to think this is about David Moyes," he said.

"It should really be about the Everton players because they have been exceptional.

"I asked them to be as professional as possible, make sure we won the last two games and don't let anything get in the way of what they have done."

The memory of Moyes being chased around London by TV crews on Wednesday following his meeting with chairman Bill Kenwright underlined the fact Everton's build-up to Sunday's game has not been normal.

Yet, once he got back onto the training ground at Finch Farm on Thursday and had the meeting with his players at which he informed them he will be leaving in the summer, Moyes has been determined to keep preparations exactly the same as usual.

"We have gone about training as normal way and we have prepared in exactly the same way," said Moyes.

"Our form has been very good and we have been consistent at home and we have a chance to complete that against West Ham.

"It will be tough though. Sam Allardyce has done a great job getting them to the top end of the league the season after being promoted.

"There was never much danger of them being at the bottom."

The sadness for Moyes is that not even victory is likely to earn a place in next season's Europa League.

In most seasons, Everton's likely sixth-placed finish would have been enough.

This term, though, European berths have gone to two clubs who finished lower down given Swansea won the Capital One Cup and Wigan reached the FA Cup final.

A month ago, Moyes spoke optimistically about sneaking into those top five places.

It has not happened, though - something which Everton can hardly be blamed for.

"The way the games have gone for us has been pretty incredible," he said.

"The teams we have been chasing are the three form teams over the last six games.

"That shows you how hard it has been.

"We have tried to hang in as much as we can but their form has kept them going, which has made it even harder for us to catch them.

"But I can only pay my players the biggest credit for the manner in which they have tried to get there."



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