Sam Allardyce has denied he was smirking at Everton fans after his Blues' desperate defeat last weekend.
And the Goodison boss admitted he is “under no illusions” about his position at the club, with Saturday’s visit of Brighton “one of the biggest games” he’s had since he arrived in November.
The veteran manager knows this has become a must-win game, after a run of just two victories in 11 matches that has seen them slide to within seven points of the drop zone.
“It is one of those big moments again this season of having to turn the season around," said Big Sam.
“I am under no illusions about my position - I can’t continue to lose football matches. It is as simple as that, really.”
Allardyce faced some scepticism amongst the Blues faithful from the very start, and events in recent weeks have made his position even more difficult.
He was criticised for appearing to compare Everton to Newcastle and West Ham in terms of size and history, and then provoked outrage in some quarters when asked about the response of fans, in his post-match TV interview at Burnley.
He smiled when asked the question, and some supporters claimed he was taking the mickey out of them by smirking.
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But the former England manager addressed those claims head on when he responded:
“I really didn’t do anything of such that I am particularly aware about. I think I said “I am more disappointed than them” when I was asked the question.
“I don’t know what my facial expressions look like when I am answering questions, to be honest with you. My wife often tells me to stop (fidgeting). All I know is that I was thinking about the question and thinking how to answer it.Read More
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“I think the way I answered it reflected that I was extremely disappointed to see the way we performed in the second half. The big responsibility lies on you [as the manager]. This job, you go home and think about it all the time.”
Allardyce knows that only winning matches can win the fans over. “It is a huge game, one of the biggest I’ve had in my short time here.
“This position [with fans] is difficult but I have had difficult positions at other clubs I have been at, you know? If you win, you win fans over.”
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