Carlo Ancelotti has said Everton should not be obsessed with the longest trophy drought in club history, but driven by the opportunity for the Carabao Cup.
Everton haven’t won the League Cup in any form and host Manchester United in Wednesday’s quarter-final as they seek to claim the club’s first silverware since 1995. Rather than feeling overwhelmed by history, However, Ancelotti believes his side should be inspired by the challenge of finally delivering a trophy to Goodison Park and by the strong comeback in form that has seen Chelsea, Leicester and Arsenal defeated in the last three games.
“We have ambition and a great, great motivation for this competition,” said the manager of Everton. “There’s not a lot of pressure because this club hasn’t won for a long time. It’s not an obsession, it’s just a big motivation. I think we are preparing for this match in a good dynamic.
“It’s a really important competition because we’re not that far from the final; in three games it’s over. We are here, we want to compete for this, we want to fight. The aim is to reach the final, but to do that we have to have a fantastic game tomorrow against one of the toughest teams in the Premier League who beat us here a few weeks ago.
Bruno Fernandes orchestrated United’s 3-1 win when the teams met last month and while Ole Gunnar Solskjær has spoken of resting the playmaker during this busy schedule, Ancelotti remains wary of the threat he poses. . “I learned that day that if you give him space, we are dead,” he added. “We have to avoid leaving space because he is a fantastic player and the key point for Manchester United at the moment. We have to deal with it. “
Everton, who will be without James Rodríguez again due to a calf problem, remain one of the few Premier League clubs able to accommodate 2,000 supporters as Covid-19 restrictions increase across the country. Ancelotti admits their support helped in the home wins over Arsenal and Chelsea, but insists that fans’ feedback is more important to the company than an obvious sporting advantage.
“The fact that you can listen to 2,000 supporters again when we haven’t been able to make any noise for six months is really good,” added the Blues manager. “The two games we won against strong teams [was] because the players are more focused, more focused and more motivated.
“The supporters have helped us a lot, but I don’t consider it an advantage that we have fans. I just think it’s a good start and the most important thing is to bring all the supporters back to the stadiums.