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Mar 1, 2020 at 2pm UK
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Man UtdManchester United
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Carlo Ancelotti: 'Manchester United game is not make or break for Everton'

:Headline: Carlo Ancelotti: 'Manchester United game is not make or break for Everton':
The Toffees started the weekend in 11th place but only five points adrift of fifth-placed United.

Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti does not believe Sunday's result against Manchester United will be decisive in their challenge for European football.

The Toffees are just five points behind their opponents, who began the weekend in fifth place, after a run of 17 points from nine league matches.

When the Italian took charge on Boxing Day at the beginning of that run, European football seemed a distant dream as caretaker manager Duncan Ferguson had only just hauled the side out of the relegation zone after a terrible spell under Marco Silva.

Now, however, the prospect is tangible and, such has been the upturn in their form, Ancelotti does not see the game against a rejuvenated United as make-or-break for their ambitions.

"I think the fight for Europe is still open and it will be open after the game against United," said the Italian, whose side are unbeaten in six at home in the league and have won four of their last seven against United at Goodison, including a 4-0 victory last season.

"It doesn't matter. To win against United will be important for our confidence and (position in the) table.

"Manchester United is a strong team in a good moment but... our house (Goodison Park) is important.

"It gives us more confidence and we can play with more confidence."

Midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson enjoys a good record against United also, with five goals and four assists in his last nine matches against them.

However, he has not scored since mid-October, partly due to being asked to perform a deeper role than he is used to in midfield, but Ancelotti told the Iceland international not to worry too much about his ongoing drought.

A successful 4-4-2 formation has denied Sigurdsson his favoured number 10 role but the manager sees a future for the 30-year-old club-record signing.

"It is true he didn't score as many as last year but he has played in different positions, far from the opponent's goal," said Ancelotti.

"It is important tactically and technically we can build up from the back more efficiently with him (in midfield).

"Of course we lose him up front because he shoots really well but it doesn't matter as the expectation I have with him he was able to realise in this period.

"I don't have any complaints against him, he is doing well and I hope he can score soon – but it is not the most important part of his job now."

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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool29271166214582
2Manchester CityMan City28183768313757
3Leicester CityLeicester29165858283053
4Chelsea29146951391248
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd29129844301445
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves29101364134743
7Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd28111073025543
8Tottenham HotspurSpurs29118104740741
9Arsenal2891364036440
10Burnley29116123440-639
11Crystal Palace29109102632-639
12Everton29107123746-937
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2998122541-1635
14Southampton29104153552-1734
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton29611123240-829
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham2976163550-1527
17Watford2969142744-1727
18Bournemouth2976162947-1827
19Aston Villa2874173456-2225
20Norwich CityNorwich2956182552-2721
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Bundesliga Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Bayern MunichBayern25174473264755
2Borussia DortmundDortmund25156468333551
3RB Leipzig25148362263650
4Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach25154649301949
5Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen25145645301547
6Schalke 04Schalke2591063336-337
7Wolfsburg259973430436
8Freiburg2510693435-136
9Hoffenheim25105103543-835
10FC Koln25102133945-632
11Union BerlinUnion Berlin2593133241-930
12Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt2484123841-328
13Hertha Berlin2577113248-1628
14Augsburg2576123652-1627
15Mainz 052582153453-1926
16Fortuna DusseldorfDusseldorf2557132750-2322
17Werder Bremen2446142755-2818
18SC PaderbornSC Paderborn2544173054-2416
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