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Football: Moyes: Phil's so hungry; ASTON VILLA v EVERTON, VILLA PARK, 2pm.

Byline: By GRAHAM CHASE

DAVID MOYES believes Phil Neville's determination for Everton to succeed has affected his skipper's performances.

The 30-year-old (below) has been a cornerstone of Moyes's side since arriving for pounds 3.5m from Manchester United two years ago.

Everton manager Moyes knows the England man can fill any gap in his side and while he acknowledges Neville's sense of responsibility can sometimes affect his display on the pitch, the Scot would not have it any other way.

Moyes said: "He's desperate for us to do so well and I admire him greatly because I know exactly what he's trying to do.

"Phil has had to take on all roles and his contribution has been fantastic. His play could have been better but he's never hidden from anything.

He's continually wanted the ball and he's tried to make things happen and I admire him for that. He knows how things need to be done, he sticks up for his team-mates and he's been a tremendous captain.

"He's doing everything he can to inspire the team even if at times he's the one who is taking the rap for it."

Meanwhile, defender Joleon Lescott remains sure Everton will qualify for the UEFA Cup group phase. The Blues travel to the Ukraine with the tie level at 1-1 after drawing with Metalist Kharkiv at Goodison Park in midweek but Lescott remains defiant. He said: "We are confident we can go out there and get the right result."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 23, 2007
Words:247
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