By 90Min
December 13, 2017

Back in early November, before he took over as Everton boss, Sam Allardyce laid out his plans of a potential blueprint to reinvigorate the Toffees' ailing season.

Writing for Paddy Power, the 63-year-old spoke of Everton's stars needing to rediscover their confidence, belief and resiliency.

"Whoever becomes the manager of Everton, the first thing they need to do is re-instil that confidence and morale in them again. When a player plays with confidence, that’s when he’s playing to the best of his ability," he wrote.

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Fast forward five weeks, a signed contract and a four-match unbeaten run later, and Big Sam's already laid the foundations - and then some - to get the Blues back on track.

Few initially wanted him to take over following Ronald Koeman's sacking in late October. Even fewer accepted him when it was evident Allardyce would arrive. Plenty lambasted Everton for even considering handing him an 18-month deal.

All those dissenting voices have disappeared - for the time being at least - as the man known for never being relegated from the Premier League has engineered a remarkable turn around in form and performance levels at Goodison Park.

Everton have conceded just one goal in the four matches Allardyce has helmed - a far cry from the 13 they let in during David Unsworth's last four games in temporary charge. They look much more solid at the back, much fitter, full of belief and brimming with confidence.

Mission accomplished then for now, and Allardyce can look back fondly on his first few weeks with a smile on his face.

Of course, the hard work doesn't stop there. The Toffees are still only six points clear of the bottom three, have some tough fixtures to contend with over the festive period and need to keep this run going into the New Year ahead of North West clashes with Manchester United and Liverpool.

Allardyce has already laid down the law to his players in stating that those who don't wish to be here past January need to tell him now, and has cancelled plans for a Christmas party ahead of the upcoming fixture-laden schedule.

It is a discipline and honesty that was somewhat lacking in Koeman's final few weeks as boss - though no one can state he didn't employ either of those traits during his tenure - and has helped to get Everton's senior players focused again after they appeared to give up the fight.

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Only time will tell if Allardyce's managerial spell on Merseyside is a success but, in the short to medium term, he's exactly what Everton need.

"Focus on getting up the table, win the game that is in front of you, get three points and move up the table," he wrote as the footnote of his Paddy Power column.

If his stars heeds his words, the season could yet be a decent one for Everton.

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