DAVID MOYES admitted it was “hard to take” as Everton surrendered yet more ground in the battle for Champions League qualification this weekend.
The Blues conceded a 90th minute equaliser as Norwich City left Goodison Park with a 1-1 draw. Everton remain fifth in the Premier League table, but have now won just three of their last 11 league games.
“It was a sickener,” said Moyes afterwards. “That was pretty hard to take, but Norwich were always in the game while it was only 1-0. That's the nature of the Premier League, and that was the case in the second half.
“I thought we played well for 25-30 minutes. We started well and controlled the game. But Norwich grew into the game, and you've got to give them credit.
“They had one or two opportunities, but I actually thought that we had just got through the spell, and we actually looked more likely to make it 2-0 than they did to equalise. But they did, and we have to take the point.”
Everton, as at Reading last week, had led through Steven Naismith's early goal, but again surrendered momentum in a disjointed second-half display, which culminated in Sebastien Bassong's late leveller.
“Am I concerned that the momentum is slowing? Yes,” Moyes said. “Today was always going to be a tough game. Norwich are a good side and have been getting some good results, and also with what we had available to us, it was always going to be a tight game.
“I couldn't see us winning it that comfortably. And when we were chasing it, we didn't have an awful lot to chase it with.
“It was a difficult one for us, because we didn't have an awful lot to alter it.
“We probably wouldn't have started with that team, but we were a bit short at right back. We were short in forward areas too, so we had to change things around.
“We need our full squad. Everybody does. But we need some of them, anyway, to give us one or two alternatives.”
Moyes was disappointed with the goal Everton conceded. It came from a free-kick that the Blues boss felt should never have been awarded, and from a cross that both Tim Howard and John Heitinga should have dealt with.
“Was it a free kick? No, I don't think so,” he said. “Could (Howard) have come for the ball? Yes. The ball was in the air long enough. But I don't think it was a free kick either.”