Sunday 19 January 2020

Angry Toffees fans seek to confront players

Fabian Delph
Fabian Delph

Everton director of football Marcel Brands spoke to angry fans who turned up at the club's training ground on Monday in the wake of their FA Cup defeat to Liverpool.

A small group of supporters travelled to Finch Farm, seeking to confront players after they lost 1-0 to Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday evening.

The fans wanted to meet players who were training at the time, but instead Brands made the decision to walk to the gate of the complex and listen to their complaints.

The incident came after Everton midfielder Fabian Delph was allegedly involved in a heated exchange with a fan on social media following the defeat.

Everton, who have not won a Merseyside derby away from home for 20 years, lost to a youthful Liverpool side on Sunday, with 18-year-old midfielder Curtis Jones scoring the winner for Jurgen Klopp's side.

It was a second straight defeat for the Toffees following their New Year's Day loss at Manchester City.

They were the first defeats since Carlo Ancelotti took charge on December 21, and the Italian said the performance at Anfield was "not good enough" and he would speak to his players about the standards required.

Everton, 11th in the Premier League, host Brighton on Saturday.

Meanwhile, British politicians have urged the FA to reconsider its streaming partnership with bet365, saying it creates "an active incentive to gamble".

The bookmaker streamed 23 FA Cup third-round matches last weekend as part of a six-year deal the FA signed with sports media company IMG in January 2017 which started in the 2018-19 season. The matches were only available to watch if the customer placed a bet or put £5 in an account in the 24 hours before kick-off.

All third-round matches last weekend were delayed by one minute to publicise the FA's 'Heads Up' mental health campaign, backed by FA president Prince William, which appears to jar with the bet365 tie-up given the link between problem gambling and mental health issues.

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