Everton caretaker manager David Unsworth said his players were fearful during their Premier League defeat to Leicester on Sunday.
The 2-0 defeat at the King Power Stadium means it is now seven without a win for the Toffees in all competitions.
Unsworth told evertonfc.com: "I wasn’t happy at all at half-time. That wasn’t the performance I expected in the first half - we were a little bit fearful, we sat back for some reason, having spoken about playing on the front foot."
After a slow start, Everton fell behind to a classic Leicester counter attack finished by Jamie Vardy and it left Everton's caretaker boss unhappy: "I was disappointed with the manner of the first goal."
He said. "We’d spoken about and gone through the counter-attack from a set-piece, because they’re very strong and have scored goals over a period of time from those situations."
Leicester doubled their lead through Demarai Gray, but Everton then had claims for a penalty as Christian Fuchs fouled Aaron Lennon.
Unsworth said: "’I'm told it was a penalty. I couldn’t really see because it was down the far side and there were bodies in front of me.
"I always look for the reaction of the players and the reaction was that it was nailed on."
The defeat means Everton stay in the relegation zone ahead of another busy week. The Toffees head to France on Thursday to face Lyon in the Europa League before a crucial game at Goodison Park next Sunday against Watford.
Unsworth expects to still be in charge for both fixtures saying: "We need a couple of wins to just settle everybody back down and to give the players that touch of confidence that obviously isn’t there at the moment.
"That’s my job for however long I sit here - to instil a bit of confidence and to try and get a win. Sunday’s game now against Watford is a massive game. I’m sure the Goodison faithful will get behind us because we need three points and we need three points quickly."