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  • Everton'S Jordan Pickford Optimistic Amidst Relegation Battle Woes

Everton's Jordan Pickford optimistic amidst relegation battle woes

Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is hopeful history will not keep repeating itself and the club can wave goodbye to relegation battles.

For the third successive year the Toffees have found themselves struggling to preserve their long, proud top-flight record which was extended to a 71st successive season after Saturday's win over Brentford.

This campaign was slightly different as the club were impacted by two separate deductions totalling eight points – although the final two they are appealing against – for breaches of profitability and sustainability regulations.

Without those punishments Sean Dyche's side would currently be behind 12th-placed Brighton on goal difference, 19 points clear of the drop zone.

Pickford believes that points to a turnaround in fortunes – although he has witnessed a number of false dawns previously.

"I have been here for seven years now and (we) just keep fighting," he told Sky Sports.

"Hopefully, we're not in this position (again). I keep saying it every year. We are Everton Football Club and we don't want to be in this position but we seem to be.

"This year has probably been a little bit different, I think we've been hard-taken with the points (deduction) but we've bounced back as a club and as a unit.

"We keep fighting. I am a fighter, and I just love playing football."

Three wins in a week has also brought Pickford three clean sheets, putting him only behind Arsenal's David Raya (14) in the race for the Premier League's Golden Glove.

There was some speculation this week the England number one could be one of the club's prized assets which may have to be sold to balance the books and avoid more PSR breaches.

However, Dyche dismissed that suggestion.

"I think he is genuinely happy here. His family life is settled, he is settled in as part of the fabric of Everton. That is an important factor," said the Everton boss ahead of their Friday night trip to Luton.

"He is still England's number one. He is in a healthy place for himself.

"If players are settled in what their life is and with the club, that is a really good situation and he certainly seems so to me.

"He has delivered performances, especially important performances. He has had a couple of things go against him which can happen as a keeper, he handles that side of it well, stays focused on the job in hand.

"There is a team in front of him which works very hard and I think he believes in that team."

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