“Martinez is totally different to any manager”

, 5 March, 0comments  |  Jump to most recent
And with Big Dunc, ''The whole set-up is fantastic''
Steven Naismith is the latest Everton player to publicly expound the unique virtues of Roberto Martinez, crediting the Spaniard's management style for his improved form and his enhancing his international prospects.

"For me [life under Martinez], he's been great. I've learned more this season than I did under any manager previously. Every day there is something new.

"He's totally different to any manager I've worked with in terms of his methods, philosophies and the way he wants us to play. It's been a big learning curve, but more down to the fact that he sees it as a squad game."

It's that expansive attitude when it comes to his squad as a whole, — combined, perhaps, with an unexpectedly high number of key injuries — that has given Naismith more opportunities in the first team than he enjoyed last season.

"[The manager] doesn't have players he thinks will play every week. We were due to play Crystal Palace recently and the game got called off. There were three of us who were in the team that night but then didn't play against Swansea a few days later.

"That sums up the way he works. He treats every game differently and has a game plan. Normally, in pre-season, you run and then get the footballs out. He's a different type of manager. It intrigues me and I'm really interested in the way he works."

The former Rangers striker believes that Martinez's influence has boosted his international career as he fights for his place in Scotland's national squad, one he believes he is vastly improved.

"With Scotland I think I've put my case forward to be considered for the main striking role but one thing I've learned from Roberto Martinez this season is that a team needs everybody. It's not a case of the manager picking one striker to go with in every game. In my international career, this is as hard a squad to get into as there has ever been."

The Scot also describes the benefits of the presence of fan idol Duncan Ferguson who is now a key part of the Blues' first-team coaching setup.

"Duncan is a massive figure at the club with the fans, he brings a lot of passion and has worked well with me," Naismith continues. "I've enjoyed the small things he does. We do shooting drills with him. He takes a lot of them and has been good to work with. He was always someone I looked up to. I vaguely remember him at Rangers, but more so his Everton career.

"The fans love him. Everybody talks about 'big Dunc this' and 'big Dunc that'. Everton's most recent success came when he was in the team and the Evertonians still remember that. You hear a lot of stories about him, so it was good to have a chat. He's actually a really quiet guy and he doesn't give much away until you sit down with him and have a good talk.

"Now he's working with us, you see him as a coach, not as a young guy trying to be a coach. He's good and I don't think there's a better club for him to be at. The whole set-up is fantastic."

Quotes sourced from Liverpool Echo

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