Everton manager Frank Lampard believes his side are better equipped to deal with setbacks than last season but accepts next week will test that.
Part of the reason for the fight against relegation was the team’s inability to recover from a loss.
Just seven times last season, the Toffees responded to loss with a win in the next game, with eight games and five winless runs compounding their problems.
Despite failing to win after their two defeats this season, they have maintained a six-game unbeaten streak that ended in a 2-1 loss to Manchester United on Sunday.
The task doesn’t get easier, with a trip to Tottenham followed by a midweek visit to Newcastle, but Lampard is confident they can rise to the challenge.
“We’re in a position now where if we take any hits, we have to come back stronger,” he said.
“We took a lot of hits last season when I came in and before I came in. We were down in terms of confidence.
“Now we want to be mentally stronger as a club. These games are a big test for us.
“We have a long road ahead of us. We’re making progress, but we mustn’t think we’re close to where we want to be because we’re not there yet. We have work to do.
“A lot of the big elements are fresh and new: our back four, our midfield three, some players who haven’t played much together.
“We can’t expect instant answers, but can we make progress and get a little bit better every day? That is in our hands.”
Everton are likely to take on Richarlison this weekend, whom they sold for £60million in the summer to even the books.
The Brazil international has settled in well and although he has yet to score domestically, he has a Champions League double to his credit.
“I’m not surprised and I don’t know why the rest of the world should be surprised, whether it’s because he came from Everton, I don’t know how glamorous that might be for some people. That shouldn’t be the case,” Lampard said.
“He’s a very talented player. Even when he was here he was always Brazil’s number 9 or in the support team and when you think about the competition for the places he’s earned in that team I think he’s very respected in the football world.
“Maybe there were other things that some people weren’t so keen on. I always found it a pleasure to work with him.
“We know him very well but his style was a bit unpredictable, that’s probably one of the big pluses with him, the way he plays, he’s always a threat.
“We are aware of the threat, but we must try to nullify it.”
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/everton-frank-lampard-richarlison-newcastle-manchester-united-b2202647.html Everton need to come back stronger after scoring – Frank Lampard