Striker concern for Jagielka

Phil Jagielka fears a lack of striking options could end up costing Everton in the battle for a top-four finish.

Last Updated: 10/02/14 at 14:57 Post Comment

Phil Jagielka: Admits Everton have it all to do if they are finish inside the to

Phil Jagielka: Admits Everton have it all to do if they are finish inside the to

With top marksman Romelu Lukaku currently sidelined and January loan arrival Lacina Traore still short of full match sharpness, the Toffees have been forced to experiment.

Kevin Mirallas, a man more accustomed to life on the flanks, has been deployed down the middle in each of Everton's last two Premier League fixtures.

He was unable to provide an attacking spark at White Hart Lane on Sunday as a 1-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur left Roberto Martinez's side five points adrift of the UEFA Champions League places.

Jagielka admits breaking into that group is now a tough ask, with a killer instinct lacking in the final third at present.

He said in the Liverpool Echo: "We're struggling a little bit at the moment.

"Lacina is not quite right yet and it's difficult because although we played some good stuff, we were perhaps missing that fox in the box or target man to get us the goal.

"It's frustrating and at the least, we should probably have kept a clean sheet and come away with 0-0 but we didn't.

"It's going to be a little bit harder for us now. There are other teams in the mix for fourth.

"If we'd beaten Spurs, we'd have pushed on a little bit, but there's still 13 games left and a lot of points to play for.

"A lot of teams are trying to get as many points as they can for one reason or another and we've got a lot of hard games too. We've got a tough one coming up against Palace."

He added on the disappointing reversal in north London: "We had the better chances on the day but we were so frustrated with the goal.

"It looks as if Ossie (Leon Osman) was fouled before it and then everything happened so quickly and it was a case of was he or wasn't he onside?

"It was a great finish though and you can't take that away from (Emmanuel) Adebyaor. We didn't take our own chances and we were punished for it."

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