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Ray Parlour identifies Everton weakness, claims summer signing has not stepped up

By Harvey Byrne

Ray Parlour believes that Everton’s struggles lie with the defence given the club’s recent poor form.

The Toffees have won just one of their last 11 fixtures in all competitions, suffering six losses and four defeats.

However, their good start to the campaign has seen them stay in the top half of the table in ninth.

Former Arsenal midfielder Parlour believes the defence is letting the team down, while claiming summer signing Ashley Williams has not stepped up.

“I think it’s the other end that he has to shore up” started Parlour speaking on Tuesday morning’s Sky Sports News’ Premier League Daily show.

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“He’s got a lot of experience at the back as well. Ashley Williams has come in from Swansea, he’s not really stepped up, not played as well as he has at Swansea or been the leader you expect him to be.

“You’ve also got Leighton Baines and Gareth Barry, very experienced players and at the moment they just aren’t getting it right at the back.”

Everton are sat on a goal difference of zero with 19 goals scored and 19 against them in the league this campaign.

Only seven teams have a better defensive record than the Toffees in the league and even local rivals Liverpool in third have conceded one more than them.

Meanwhile, Williams, 32, has become a mainstay in the back four since his £9million move from the Swans in the summer.

He has started 14 of Everton’s 15 Premier League fixtures this season and manager Ronald Koeman is keeping his faith in the Wales international.

The Toffees will face second placed Arsenal at Goodison Park on Tuesday evening in a difficult week, which will also see them face Liverpool on Monday.

In other Everton news, why the Toffees should make a move for this available Premier League midfielder.