‘Onwards and upwards’ for Allardyce
“It’s a dream job for me and I’ll give it 100 per cent”
Sam Allardyce: “Getting a win in your first game after a fantastic win on Wednesday night - back-to-back (league) wins for the first time this season. Let’s hope it’s onwards and upwards boys.” Photo: Jan Kruger/Getty Images
Sam Allardyce hopes it is “onwards and upwards” in his dream job after winning his first game in charge of Everton 2-0 against Huddersfield.
Allardyce, 63, signed an 18-month deal on Thursday and marked his return to the dug-out after a six-month break with victory thanks to second-half goals from Gylfi Sigurdsson and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
“Getting a win in your first game after a fantastic win on Wednesday night - back-to-back (league) wins for the first time this season. Let’s hope it’s onwards and upwards boys,” Allardyce said.
“It took me six games at Palace (to get my first win) and everybody was telling everybody else I’d come back too soon, wasn’t the man I used to be and all that c**p.
“If I take a job I’m totally, fully, 100 per cent committed and I don’t take the job in any other circumstances. If I feel I can’t give 100 per cent to the football club then I wouldn’t take the job.
“I turned many a job down before this one. I felt this one was right for me. It’s a dream job for me and I’ll give it 100 per cent.”
The former Bolton, Newcastle, Blackburn, West Ham, Sunderland and Crystal Palace boss is in his 11th job in a 26-year managerial career, but a dire first half at Goodison Park was not the start he had wanted.
“Our resilience out of possession is looking very good,” Allardyce added. “In possession, particularly in the first half, was a surprise.
“I thought we were going to be better than that after Wednesday night. It didn’t happen in the first half, but in the second we got what we wanted.”
Allardyce said two straight wins had “taken the pressure off the club” and a main priority now was to get his injured players, such as Ross Barkley, Phil Jagielka, Leighton Baines and Michael Keane all back in action.
Calvert-Lewin had a hand in both goals, his neat flick setting up Sigurdsson for the opener two minutes into the second half and then firing home via a deflection after running on to Wayne Rooney’s slide-rule pass in the 73rd minute.
Allardyce, who described his Goodison reception prior to kick-off as “fantastic”, added: “I’m so pleased Dominic got a goal after his work on the front line.
“A young centre-froward learning his trade in the Premier League and to get that goal at that particular time just killed Huddersfield off.”
Huddersfield slumped to their fourth straight league defeat for the first time since November 2000 and after failing to score in eight successive games on the road head coach David Wagner admitted his players were low on confidence.
“It was a disappointing afternoon for us,” Wagner said. “Everton had this bit more quality and creativity, especially for the first goal and they deserved this win.
“I’m disappointed about the game. It makes no sense, and this is very important, that we now speak about four defeats in a row because you have to analyse every defeat and each has its own story.
“This was a very disappointing one because we didn’t perform. The players have the talent to create, they have the quality, but they were not able to show it.”