Jordan Pickford: Everton goalkeeper eyes Premier League Golden Glove after shutting down relegation fears

Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford has kept 12 Premier League clean sheets this season and is two off catching Arsenal stopper David Raya with three games remaining; watch Luton Town vs Everton on Sky Sports Premier League from 7pm on Friday; kick-off 8pm

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Jordan Pickford discusses Everton’s run in where his three clean sheets helped keep The Toffees up.

Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is hopeful history will not keep repeating itself and the club can wave goodbye to relegation battles.

For the third successive year the Toffees have found themselves struggling to preserve their long, proud top-flight record which was extended to a 71st successive season after Saturday’s win over Brentford.

This campaign was slightly different as the club were impacted by two separate deductions totalling eight points – although the final two they are appealing against – for breaches of profitability and sustainability regulations.

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Without those punishments Sean Dyche’s side would currently be behind 12th-placed Brighton on goal difference, 19 points clear of the drop zone.

Pickford believes that points to a turnaround in fortunes – although he has witnessed a number of false dawns previously.

“I have been here for seven years now and (we) just keep fighting,” he told Sky Sports.

Image: Pickford has over three years left on his current contract

“Hopefully, we’re not in this position (again). I keep saying it every year. We are Everton Football Club and we don’t want to be in this position but we seem to be.

“This year has probably been a little bit different, I think we’ve been hard-taken with the points (deduction) but we’ve bounced back as a club and as a unit.

“We keep fighting. I am a fighter, and I just love playing football.”

Image: Pickford heads to the European Championships in top form

Three wins in a week have also brought Pickford three clean sheets, putting him only behind Arsenal’s David Raya (14) in the race for the Premier League’s Golden Glove.

There was some speculation this week the England number one could be one of the club’s prized assets and may have to be sold to balance the books to avoid more PSR breaches.

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However, Dyche dismissed that suggestion.

“I think he is genuinely happy here. His family life is settled, he is settled in as part of the fabric of Everton. That is an important factor,” said the Everton boss ahead of their Friday night trip to Luton, live on Sky Sports.

“He is still England’s number one. He is in a healthy place for himself.

Image: Jordan Pickford has kept three consecutive clean sheets

“If players are settled in what their life is and with the club, that is a really good situation and he certainly seems so to me.

“He has delivered performances, especially important performances. He has had a couple of things go against him which can happen as a keeper, he handles that side of it well, stays focused on the job in hand.

“There is a team in front of him which works very hard and I think he believes in that team.”

Dyche blossoms into music video star after leading Everton to safety

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Everton boss Sean Dyche appears in a Blossoms music video after meeting the band at a Rick Astley concert.

Dyche reflected on a “surreal” week in which the club avoided relegation and he made his debut in a music video.

Having done the business in his day job, beating Brentford on Saturday to secure a 71st successive top-flight season, Stockport-based indie band Blossoms dropped a trailer for their new single in which Dyche features prominently.

Only last week, in response to an answer he gave in an interview about Green Day, lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong posted a mocked-up picture of him in an Everton shirt signing a contract.

Asked about a strange last few days, Dyche said: “Some of it by design: the performances and wins I would hope. The rest of it is certainly surreal.

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HIghlights from Everton’s match against Brentford in the Premier League.

“The Green Day thing came from an answer to a question and then Green Day picked up on that and it’s amazing.

“The music video was basically the lads I met at a Rick Astley concert and they just said ‘Would you fancy it?’ To be in a music video, why would you not fancy that when you are a music fan?

“They sort of gave me a rough feeling of ‘Could you wear a suit, could you turn up’ and I was thinking ‘Not quite sure how this is going to go’ but they are a really good group of lads and really good performers.

“I saw them at the Isle of Wight festival pre-pandemic and they referenced it and said ‘Would you come and do this video?’ I said ‘Yeah sure’. Really pleased.”

Asked about the role he played in the video – essentially being himself – Dyche added: “I wouldn’t call it a character.

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Everton boss Sean Dyche was delighted after their 1-0 win over Brentford secured Premier League survival for another season.

“The basic premise is I send them on a mission, they have a few mishaps on the way and I remind them they better get the job done. I’m pleased it has got some positive traction.

“Tom, the lead singer, just messaged me and said ‘Listen, it’s been received positively at this stage’ and I think it’s Radio 1’s record of the week. It is a good tune, which is helpful.

“For someone who is a big music and gig fan to be asked and feature in it was very pleasing and a good bit of fun.”

Everton’s remaining fixtures

Image: Watch Luton Town vs Everton on Sky Sports Premier League on Friday; kick-off 8pm

May 3: Luton (A) – Premier League, kick-off 8pm, live on Sky Sports

May 11: Sheff Utd (H) – Premier League, kick-off 3pm

May 19: Arsenal (A) – Premier League, kick-off 4pm

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