Midfielder Tom Davies admits that being born and raised in the local area can make it harder to play for Everton, especially when times are tough at the club.
Since his senior debut in 2016, Davies has felt both sides of the coin playing for the Merseyside club, from staring a relegation battle in the face at the beginning of last season, to pushing for Europe under Marco Silva.
Davies' vast range of experiences in such a short time grant him a unique perspective on what it's like to play for the club as someone from Liverpool, and he opened up on his experiences in an interview with the Telegraph.
“I think it’s because you have that attachment to the club and it becomes an emotional thing,” he said. "It’s going well for me, and I am happy, but it definitely can be harder in the difficult times for the local lads.”
Davies was born in west Derby, just three miles from Goodison Park, and made his senior debut at just 17.
His development since has been so impressive that he was handed the captain's armband for an EFL Cup tie with Rotherham earlier this season, allowing him to captain an Everton side featuring Kieran Dowell, Jonjoe Kenny and Dominic Calvert-Lewin - all of whom he played with in the Everton youth system.
“Dowell was playing alongside me,” he added. "I've been playing with him since I was little. I had Jonjoe Kenny at right-back, and Dom Calvert-Lewin up front. It’s an odd scenario that you are playing with those lads, but it feels normal as we have been together for a long time.
"It makes it better. If you see us around here we are always together - me, Kieran, Jonjo and Dom, just the four of us. Joined at the hip.
“I think it also gives you that competitiveness. If you see one doing well then you say to yourself, ‘come on, I’ve got to do that’. It’s good, it’s very good to have that around you.”
He was able to hold onto the captaincy for the following three games; a defeat to Arsenal, and then wins against Fulham and Leicester.
Despite this, he found himself out of the team at the weekend - but says he is as willing as ever to fight for his spot back for their visit to Manchester United.
“We have a very good squad, very good competition. It’s healthy and it’s what you want," he said.
"Now there will be more rotation with three or four players who can play in a position. Obviously I want to get back into the team so I will just train as hard as I can.”