Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton challenged his players to share the responsibility of finding the back of the net, but admitted the comfort Glenn Murray supplies with his reliable nature in front of goal.
Murray has contributed six of his team’s 11 goals in the Premier League this season, and Hughton highlighted the team’s continued desire to support the club’s post-war record goalscorer ahead of this afternoon's game with Everton.
He said, “We want to be spreading the goals around the team, with centre-halves getting more goals from set plays, the occasional goal from midfield players and more from our wide players.
“But in recent games we’ve needed somebody. Testament to Glenn, he’s able to do what he does because of what he’s prepared to put in.
“We’re playing in a very difficult league and every team wants their strikers to score goals. For a club like ours, it’s big to have that number nine that you can rely on.
“He’s not just a number nine that scores goals, he’s also a number nine that’s prepared to work hard for the team.”
The Seagulls will go in search of their first victory at Goodison Park this afternoon, and Hughton fully expects a difficult game against the Toffees, who are developing under the guidance of Marco Silva.
“For us to get something, we would see it as a big result. They’re a very good side with an aggressive way of playing on the front foot. They’ve got good offensive players that can hurt you.
“It will be a very tough game for us and it’s what you would expect going to Everton. They’re in good form at the moment and were very good at Old Trafford.
“What I do know about Marco Silva is that he wants his team to play in a certain way. Generally his team, even when he was at Hull, play on the front foot and press in good areas.
“It’s a very attacking, structured style. They’ve got good players — we’ve spoken about Glenn but in [Gylfi] Sigurdsson they’ve got a player who’s on form and has become a key player.”
Albion are closely positioned behind Everton in the Premier League table ahead of today’s game, but Hughton believes the Toffees are showing signs of improvement to challenge the top six.
“The big six are the big six and everyone would speak about them because they’re the ones that have qualified for the Champions League in recent times. All six of them have been there.
“For me, those six teams stand alone. Then it’s the teams outside of that and I’ve always seen Everton as the seventh team.
“At the moment they’re developing a team and performances that they’d like to think will push them towards getting into that top six.”