Frank Lampard says Everton will “always have another fight” after their Boxing Day defeat to Wolves.
The fans – those who stayed till the end – booed the team off the field as relegation became a reality with the club just one point above the relegation zone thanks to an injury-time winner at Goodison Park in a 2-1 defeat.
Everton took the lead on Merseyside through Yerry Mina, but Daniel Bodence equalized for the visitors in the 22nd minute.
Despite dominating the second half, it was Wolves who struck the final blow after Rayan Ait Nouri fired home in stoppage time.
Lampard and his players were booed at the close, with Everton now losing eight of their 16 Premier League matches this season.
But Lampard, whose position as manager has been questioned amid his team’s poor condition, insists this campaign will always be a struggle after Everton narrowly avoided relegation last season.
Speaking to reporters after the disappointing defeat, the Chelsea legend said: “We will always have another fight of some sort this year because of where we were last year.
“It was a fact,” Richarlison said [to Tottenham] Which was a big strength for us at the end of the field.
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“And we didn’t really have a dom [Calvert-Lewin] Right if I’m being honest this season so big players and big things like that will have an impact.
“We have to try to find the right solution for the team in terms of how to improve the team.
“But I think the truth was that we weren’t going to be too different from the fight we were in, in a sense.
“Can we get more points on the board? Yes. For certain reasons, for some games, but we haven’t, so we just have to keep going.”
Calvert-Lewin, who has shoulder, hamstring and knee problems, has featured just six times in the top flight this season, while the club has scored 12 goals in 16 appearances.
Commenting on how important it is for the England international to return soon to Everton, Lampard said: “Yes, absolutely.
And trying to keep fit because we see what the No9s do for the clubs.
“Today we had chances to score and maybe another day Dominic can finish those chances and we are all sitting here happy and everyone is moving forward.”
On whether Everton is in another fight for survival, Lampard said: “We are in one. We have to fight together.
“Last year we were in a really difficult moment and we had some beautiful moments in the league.
“But it will never be big steps right away, this is not football.
“It’s always been a fight this year the way the Premier League is. We just need to dig in.”
Everton could now find themselves in the bottom three by the time they go to Manchester City at the weekend after six defeats in their last eight league matches.
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