Martinez praises fans and ‘incredible togetherness’

Date published: Saturday 23rd April 2016 7:48

Roberto Martinez Football365

Roberto Martinez admitted Everton’s FA Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester United was a “hard result to take”.

Anthony Martial scored in the final minute of stoppage time to send United into the FA Cup final in May with a 2-1 victory over the Toffees.

United had opened the scoring through former Everton player Marouane Fellaini, but Martinez’s side equalised through a Chris Smalling own goal.

Everton were the better side in the second half after a sluggish opening period, with Romelu Lukaku missing a penalty and a number of other presentable chances.

Speaking to BBC Sport after the game, Martinez hailed his side’s response to the 4-0 Merseyside derby defeat to Liverpool in midweek.

“It is a hard result to take,” said the Spaniard. “Over the 90 minutes we at least deserved the right to go into extra time. We were a little sluggish in the first half but we got the equaliser but to concede in injury time is a blow nobody deserved.

“I thought the fight we showed was really strong, a team with incredible togetherness. The support we had behind us was terrific. We coped with the tough period in the first half and we were strong mentality to cope.

“The longer the game went on, the bigger chance we had. The game was going our way, the chances were coming and I felt we were the stronger team. It is tough to lose a semi-final because the feeling is a very undeserved feeling. If you are going to lose a tie that is the way you lose it, creating chances and in the second half we were the better side.

“There was no comparison between today and Anfield. Everything that goes wrong can go wrong but today was the opposite. We reacted with an incredible fight and togetherness. The performance was a typical Everton response.”

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