Roy Keane has warned Leeds United's relegation rivals Everton that they must deal with the Goodison Park 'tension' if they are to survive in the Premier League this season.
The Toffees remain embroiled in the battle to avoid relegation with Leeds, Leicester City and Nottingham Forest, with it looking likely that two from the four will join Southampton in the Championship next season. Leeds face must-win games against West Ham on Sunday and Tottenham on the final day, while Everton must go to Wolves before hosting Bournemouth.
Sean Dyche's side had a remarkable 5-1 win at Brighton last week, but crashed 3-0 at home to champions-elect Manchester City on Sunday. While that setback was not unexpected, Everton now have not won at home since March 11, and have suffered heavy home defeats to Fulham (3-1) and Newcastle (4-1) in April.
Discussing the relegation battle on Sky Sports, former Manchester United star Keane felt it had been tough for Dyche's men, and said it coud be their away form which gets them over the line.
"It’s been tough going," he said. "In the last couple of games it’s been easier for Everton away from home - Brighton and at Leicester, playing on the counter attack, but at home there’s obviously more emotions involved.
"There’s more tension, there’s more nerves, and as soon as the first goal goes in you think it’s a long way back for Everton. Sean Dyche will be disappointed but they’ll write it off (City defeat), they know they’ve got the big games coming up next week.
"I still think they have enough to get the couple of points they need, but they had to write that one off. Especially after they scored the third goal so quickly in the second half, it was damage limitation. You have to take your medicine and move onto the next game.
Meanwhile former Everton defender Andy Hinchcliffe has urged the Toffees to stick together in the face of the relegation battle. Evertons saw Leeds draw 1-1 with Newcastle on Saturday, with Sam Allardyce looking to have the Whites fighting for their future.
"This is probably what the Everton fans, and maybe players, expected from this game - City dominant, winning it," he said following the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City. "They’ve just got to keep that belief they had when they went to Brighton and got that extraordinary result, there’s still possibilities there for Everton.
"Leeds and Leicester have tougher games than Everton so if they apply themselves as they’ve done today, they could get that all-important win that they need to probably keep them in the Premier League."
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