Former Everton captain Kevin Ratcliffe has told the Liverpool Echo that he feels Roberto Martinez is under tremendous pressure to win the FA Cup this season: "Saying how great the players are all the time has put the team under pressure. There is massive pressure on Roberto Martinez now to get to the FA Cup final. He’s made the point about reaching two semi finals being an achievement but you’ve got to get to the final in at least one of them."
The Blues have endured an extremely inconsistent Premier league campaign, and they currently sit 12th in the table - closer points-wise to the relegation places than the European spots.
There has clearly been a distinct lack of harmony amongst the squad in recent weeks, with murmurings of unrest stemming from talk of Romelu Lukaku's potential exit, and Leighton Baines' public criticism of the chemistry within the side.
Baines has since apologised for his comments, but there has to be an element of truth behind what he said.
In light of the former Wigan man's apology, Ratcliffe claims there have been double standards:
"It seems to me that Leighton has had to say sorry for simply telling the truth. I wonder whether Romelu Lukaku has apologised for what he said on international duty when he spoke about wanting to play in the Champions League next season? On the surface of it you’d imagine Baines meant that it’s chemistry on the pitch which is missing, but when top players like Lukaku speak out about moving away it doesn’t help the overall mood at the club."
Everton face a tricky trip to Vicarage Road on Saturday where they will play another of the FA Cup semi-finalists - Watford.