Marco Silva says Everton are intent on building momentum as they approach Saturday’s game at Southampton on the back of consecutive victories.
The Blues followed up their FA Cup third-round success against Lincoln City with a 2-0 Premier League win over Bournemouth on Sunday, a result which means Silva’s side now sit just two points behind Leicester City in seventh place.
Everton racked up five victories and two draws in the space of eight matches between September and November - and the manager is confident his side possess the quality and resolve to go on another strong run.
“It was our goal against Bournemouth to turn the home results back in our favour and win again with our fans,” he said.
“It was not just three points, we had to win again. We were together and fighting and were strong and focussed at the end.
“It was really important, now we want to keep this momentum.”
Kurt Zouma’s header on 61 minutes set Everton on their way against Bournemouth – the centre-back powering home from Lucas Digne’s inviting left-wing delivery.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin made sure of the points in stoppage time, firing in his sixth goal of the season after excellent work from Ademola Lookman.
Boss Silva was delighted to see Zouma find the back of the net for the first time in an Everton shirt. He says it is crucial goals are provided from all areas of the pitch - and challenged the Frenchman and his fellow centre-backs to continue offering an attacking threat.
“It is something I’m pushing Zouma to do because he has this quality at set pieces,” said the Blues boss.
“It’s something he has to be able to do more and more, and I also want to see it from Michael [Keane] and Yerry [Mina] and Jags [Phil Jagielka].
“It’s really important for us.”
Silva also had words of praise for playmaker Gylfi Sigurdsson, explaining how the 29-year-old’s intelligent use of the ball was an important factor in the Blues’ improved second-half display.
As well as scoring eight top-flight goals, the Icelander has made 46 key passes in the Premier League this season – a total bettered by only five players.
“Bournemouth prepared the match to put very high pressure on us,” Silva said. “At half-time, I said we had to do things differently in our build-up.
“We have to break that pressure, with a through pass or one pass into our forwards, and Gylfi was able to do that in many moments in the second half.
“As a team, we started to play faster, with more quality and confidence.”
The manner in which dynamic winger Lookman seized his opportunity to impress was a further source of satisfaction for the Blues boss.
The Portuguese believes the 21-year-old will continue to progress and backed him to emerge as a key player for Everton.
“It was a fantastic performance,” Silva said. “He will improve more and more. I have believed in him since I joined the Club. All the credit is to him.
“I have worked hard with him. He is at a very good level.
“He is a player with high quality and I have no doubt he will achieve very good things in his career - in the present and future if he keeps working this way.”