Roberto Martinez has praised James McCarthy’s impact on Everton, Sky
McCarthy started the game in his usual central midfield position but Villa took the lead in the first-half and, after the break with Everton chasing the visitors, McCarthy moved to right-back.
Everton eventually turned the score around through goals from Steven Naismith and Kevin Mirallas, winning 2-1.
“James is one of those players you sometimes don’t appreciate but he’s always there making sure the team has the right balance and what it needs,” an appreciative Martinez said. “He allows others to shine.
“He can adapt to different situations during a game when you need him to because of the tactical awareness that he has.
“At the weekend you saw that influence in the manner that we were able to get men forward, and give us the momentum to make it hard for Villa to keep a clean sheet.”
McCarthy followed Martinez to Goodison Park from Wigan Athletic in the summer, moving to Merseyside on transfer deadline day after Marouane Fellaini went to Manchester United.
Martinez added that the experience McCarthy boasts despite his young age is part of the reason he has been successful at his new club.
“It is that maturity and wealth of experience which make him such a valuable player,” the Spaniard said. “James never plays according to his age because of the incredible amount of experience he already has at 23.”
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