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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 16 November 2018

Everton's Marco Silva not taking goal-shy Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku lightly

Everton travel to Old Trafford on Sunday looking for a fourth Premier League win in a row with United striker Lukaku without a goal in 10

Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku has now gone 10 games without a goal for his club. EPA
Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku has now gone 10 games without a goal for his club. EPA

Marco Silva is not taking the threat of Romelu Lukaku or Manchester United lightly as he leads his Everton side to Old Trafford targeting a fourth successive Premier League win.

The powerful former Everton striker has drawn a blank on his last eight United starts and his woes in front of goal have mirrored United's travails this season, with the club sitting 10th in the table.

Everton are one point and two places better off courtesy of their recent hot streak, but Silva remains wary of how menacing United can be and is paying no attention to Lukaku's goal drought.

"Man United is always dangerous, always a very good team and always a strong side for all the opponents they can play against," the Everton manager said.

"When you are talking about Lukaku, when a striker doesn't score in the last games it is normal to criticise him, it happened the same with some of our strikers before.

"But I think Lukaku and the Man United team have the quality to do the good things. We have to do everything that we can to achieve a good result and to stop them.

"A good result for us is always thinking we can win the game."

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United manager Jose Mourinho has come under scrutiny for the club's modest start to the campaign, yet Silva is convinced his fellow Portuguese can turn the tide.

"He's a good friend, good man and a very good manager," Silva added. "For me it's clear, Jose is changing nothing in his behaviour from what I can see.

"I think he's the same coach who brought fantastic success to Chelsea twice, did the same at Porto, Inter Milan and Real Madrid.

"Now it is a different challenge for him at Man United and he's doing his best for sure to achieve what he wants."

Everton have not won four in a row in the top-flight for more than two years but Silva insists the chance to do so will have no bearing on his game plan.

"Nothing changes in our plan, in our week, because we can do the four in a row or not, we prepare all the weeks in the same way: to do our maximum and with a big ambition during the week to prepare well," he said.

Everton have no new injury or suspension concerns, a welcome relief for Silva after the start of his reign was blighted by issues to several first-team players.

"Everything is OK," Silva said. "Finally everything is OK, all of them are OK.

"It's really important for me, it's important for us as a squad, the competition is harder inside every day and it is what I want. In this way we can grow and get better every day."

Mourinho's United have won only one of their last seven games across competitions and the Portuguese will be without the services of forward Alexis Sanchez for the match at Old Trafford, although Jesse Lingard is in line to return after a month-long absence.

The Chile international Sanchez missed the midweek defeat to Juventus in the Uefa Champions League while Diogo Dalot and Marouane Fellaini are also doubts

Lingard could return along with Scott McTominay on Sunday, but Phil Jones looks set to miss another match. Tahith Chong was on the bench on Tuesday for the first time in a competitive match, although captain Antonio Valencia was conspicuous by his absence from the squad against Juventus.

Elsewhere on Sunday, Burnley host high-flying Chelsea while Arsenal meet fellow Londoners Crystal Palace looking to for a 12th straight win in all competitions.