Moyes hails hot shot Jelavic as Everton run riot against Fulham
23:06 GMT, 28 April 2012
Everton manager David Moyes hailed the 'massive' contribution from striker Nikica Jelavic as the Croatia international scored twice in the 4-0 victory over Fulham.
The 26-year-old, a 5.5million signing from Rangers, took his tally to 10 in 13 matches since arriving in January and an impressive nine in his last seven appearances.
Winning performance: Jelavic has scored nine times in seven appearances
With Marouane Fellaini and substitute Tim Cahill also on the scoresheet it helped Everton score four goals for the third successive league match for the first time since 1964.
'Isn't it terrific the difference it has made to the team and the club the goals that have been scored since January” said Moyes.
'I think he has been massive for us and the two goals for us today were very good.'
On-loan midfielder Steven Pienaar was at the heart of everything which was good about the Toffees and he set up three goals after Jelavic had opened the scoring from the penalty spot.
Hot shot: Jelavic, seen here beating Fulham's Mousa Dembele, was described by manager David Moyes as 'terrific'
The South Africa international returned
to his former club in January a year after leaving having failed to hold
down a regular spot at Tottenham.
He has been reinvigorated in the short time he has been back at Goodison Park and Moyes would like to re-sign him permanently in the summer, although he admits they are a long way from finalising those negotiations.
'You're probably going to ask me every press conference and I'm going to give the same answer that I genuinely don't think anything will be even talked about until after the end of the season,' said the Scot.
Pat on the back: Scorer Marouane Fellaini is congratulated by Moyes
'Pienaar's performances have given us the creativity. Nikica's given us the goals.
'I think that, apart from the odd blip, we've played really well probably since the turn of the year and the arrival of Darron Gibson, Steven, Landon Donovan (on a short-term loan from the Los Angeles Galaxy) and Nikica.
'It's made a big difference to us and we've always been as good as any other team in the Premier League.'
Fulham manager Martin Jol missed the match because of a chest infection and first-team coach Billy McKinlay admitted explaining the defeat to his boss was not something he was relishing.
'I've not spoken to him after the game so I'm not looking forward to that conversation,” he said.
'It is always difficult when the manager is not there because you miss his presence but we prepared as we always do for the games.
'How much it affected us I don't know but obviously it affected us at some point because he is not here and hopefully he will be back Tuesday (at Liverpool).'
Engine room: Steven Pienaar was at the heart of everything good about Everton
McKinlay said there were no excuses for the performance.
'It was really disappointing. Everton thoroughly deserved their win,' he added.
'No aspects of our play were at a level we were happy with.
'We started the game poorly and never got going and if you lose poor goals at the times we did and the way we did you won't get the result you are looking for.
'Early on it gave them a bit of momentum and we never got near the levels we are capable of.
'It was a long afternoon. There are lot of disappointed guys in the dressing room.'