Everton manager Frank Lampard has heaped praise on Neal Maupay after the summer signing scored the only goal of the game in the 1-0 win against West Ham.
The Toffees went into Sunday’s match without a win in the Premier League this season.
In a fairly disappointing encounter for the neutral, former Brighton striker Maupay popped up to score a fantastic winner in the second half.
“The reality is we’ve worked hard this season and deserved more,” Lampard told Sky Sports “Our fans are amazing.
“To hold on, fight, dig in, we showed a lot of parts. We’ll get better. This team has to be a reflection of the fans. The passion of the fans, they demand things and they’d better see them. We have players who can deliver that, characters.
“Hopefully our football can get even better. Hopefully the fans are happy. Nobody is getting caried away. At the moment there’s a decent feeling round the place.”
Getting goals in his team was a huge priority for Lampard in the summer transfer window.
On the matchwinner Maupay, the Toffees boss added: “We brought him in for that reason. He’s a proven Premier League scorer.
“We played some games early season with false nines, trying to find solutions.
“There were times in games with that bit of clinical finishing, we would have got more points. How close he kept that first touch and how quickly he shot is why he scored.
“You can see we’ve added a lot in the dressing room. We have to be hard to beat.”
Maupay is hoping to build on his first goal and the club’s first win of the season going into the first international break of the new campaign.
“It means a lot,” the Frenchman said. “The win is the main thing for us. We’ve been playing well and it was just a matter of time. I’m happy for the win and the goal and hopefully we can build on it.
“We’ve got very good players in midfield and the wings. They make the difference. I have to be there to finish.
“I’m just happy for the team. It’s been coming. We had a very good week of training and we deserved it.
“I wouldn’t say I feel under pressure [to score]. I know my job I have to score. That’s why they brought me in.
“I needed that goal as I haven’t played much last month. I wasn’t playing for Brighton towards the end. It was only my second game of the season. I needed this goal. I’m here to help. I trust my team-mates to put me in the right position to score.”
Midfielder Alex Iwobi has been superb since Lampard took charge in January.
The Nigerian playmaker has played a central role under the former Chelsea manager and says that Lampard allows him to play expressively.
“We have been playing really well,” Iwobi said. “The performances were good, it was just about getting the result. It’s good to get a win going into the international break.
“I didn’t get off to a great start [at Everton]. I always have the mindset to prove people wrong. The manager allows me to express myself.”