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BT Sport pundit defends Everton ace after criticism, Lampard warned

Former England number one David James has defended Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, saying the criticism he’s getting is ‘unfounded’.

Pickford has been under scrutiny a lot in recent seasons but has been a big reason why the Toffees have escaped their relegation battle this season with their Premier League status.

BT Sport pundit James, who spoke to Genting Casino via Liverpool ECHO, believes it’s up to Frank Lampard to build a better Everton side, making Pickford work less and calling him ‘extraordinary’.

“No question [about him],” he said. “What I would say is I’ve defended Jordan Pickford whenever I could. I say whenever I can, I mean if people have asked me about him, I’ve had him all season over defended.

“I think a lot of the criticism is unfounded. It’s the #1 position in England where you’re just an open target for people.

“I defended him on the basis that what he did for Everton doesn’t necessarily translate into what he does for England.

“He plays for Everton, a side struggling against relegation and he was as good as Gianluigi Donnarumma in the Euro final. In this campaign he was outstanding.

“So for England, Jordan Pickford was exceptional. There isn’t even a question. What he’s accomplished in recent weeks doesn’t surprise me because he’s capable but that doesn’t mean it secures his place for England, the two need to be replaced.

“Everton’s season has been punctuated by many opportunities for the opposition,” continued the former England international.

“So Frank needs to clarify what’s going on up front so Jordan Pickford doesn’t have to pull out those match-winning performances.

“Frank needs to envision a team that will allow Everton to challenge for better things than surviving on the penultimate day.”

truth

It’s about time someone stood up for Pickford and defended him publicly because he’s been excellent this season.

It would be lazy and easy to suggest he’s had a bad season considering how poor Everton have been and how they only managed to secure their place in next season’s competition with one game to go.

But anyone who watched this year’s games would have seen him as a standout player alongside Richarlison, but he was often the reason the team wasn’t absolutely battered.

His tremendous save during the massive win over Chelsea comes to mind immediately after being voted save of the season but ultimately also picking up the points that kept the club in contention as well.

He’s England’s number one because he’s England’s best goalkeeper and Everton are lucky to have him and this season has only proved that.

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