Real Cup hopes hit by second successive defeat
BARCELONA Real Madrid lost 2-1 at home to Celta Vigo in their Spanish King's Cup quarter-final first leg on Wednesday to slump to their second defeat in a row following a record winning streak.
Ashley Williams is hoping Tuesday's morale-boosting 2-1 victory over Arsenal at Goodison Park will inspire Everton in next Monday's Merseyside derby against Liverpool.
Defender Williams's dramatic 86th minute winner gave Everton only a second victory in 12 matches and could not have been better timed ahead of the visit of their high-flying neighbours.
"There has been a bit of soul searching, we have spoken about it, we have all looked at ourselves in the mirror and asked what we could do different and better," Williams told British media.
"We've been really trying to get back on it, not accepting things and raising the standards of our play and stuff.
"Hopefully now this gives us confidence. We have just beaten Arsenal and now got one of the biggest games of the season, if not the biggest coming up, and hopefully we can build on it."
Manager Ronald Koeman said before Tuesday's victory that his team had shown themselves to be "weak" and Williams felt the players had delivered the perfect riposte.
"I like to think we answered those questions but now we have to build on it and make sure it's not just one game," Williams added.
"The fight was there with a bit of quality too. It's an Arsenal team which has been unbelievable this season and if we can perform like that against them, we should be able to do it every week."
(Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru)
LONDON Tottenham Hotspur were the first club to expose chinks in the armour of Pep Guardiola's Manchester City and the in-form north London side will seek to inflict further damage at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
MELBOURNE World number one Andy Murray took to the Melbourne Park practice courts without obvious discomfort on Thursday just a few hours after turning his right ankle during a second round match at the Australian Open.