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Martinez praises Howard focus

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has praised goalkeeper Tim Howard's concentration levels after the Blues became the Premier League's best defence over the weekend.

Last Updated: 17/12/13 at 17:33 Post Comment

Tim Howard: Praised for his long concentration span

Tim Howard: Praised for his long concentration span

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The Toffees have only conceded 15 goals in their 16 games this season - the joint-least with Southampton - and Howard has the most clean sheets in the league with eight, matched only by West Ham United's Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Fulham did not register a single shot in target in the opening 45 minutes during Saturday's 4-1 loss at Goodison Park, althought Howard was then called upon to make a couple of fine saves early in the second half.

Martinez has also pointed out that the American remained focused in the match against Arsenal two weeks ago, despite Everton having long spells of possession.

The Spaniard told the Liverpool Echo: "When you are so dominant in possession as a team, you need great concentration as a goalkeeper because you can go 40 minutes without having a save to make.

"It happened at the Emirates and then you have two saves to make on the trot, and he was so fast and so quick and read the situation so well that they didn't look like good chances.

"Tim is a special footballer and human being at Everton, because he represents everything I want from a player. He has incredible professionalism, a great vision and he influences people around and he is someone as good as you will see in this league.

"Tim has been incredible in terms of understanding how we want to play and he has played an incredible role in how we want to start our play."

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ood lord that's got me unnecessarily excited. Damn you Storey. Cut to Liverpool being crushed under the wheels of Sparky's Stoke Machine and Firmino brought off the bench to no effect. It's the hope that kills you.

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o Schweini? Have to admit that I did a little sex wee when we signed him and I can't wait to see him in action!!!

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think he'll do quite well. My only reservation would be Kagawa, who had similar stats to Firmino in the bundesliga before he came, but time will tell.

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Roberto Firmino: Steel To Complement The Silk

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