Moyes talks up Mirallas performance
Everton manager David Moyes has compared Kevin Mirallas' impact in their 2-2 draw against Tottenham with that of Gareth Bale.
Gylfi Sigurdsson earned Spurs a share of the spoils after Phil Jagielka and Mirallas - the latter with a fine solo effort - had cancelled out Emmanuel Adebayor's early opening goal at White Hart Lane.
The Merseysiders were missing key men Marouane Fellaini and Steven Pienaar due to suspension and Moyes hailed Mirallas for stepping up to the mark.
"Mirallas was our individual today and did what Gareth Bale may usually do," Moyes said.
"I thought Mirallas got better in the second half and his goal showed why you stick with strikers. Even after his goal we had a couple of chances to make it 3-2.
"It was going to be hard anyway but today we went to try and win it and we made a change, got a goal and we had to defend a lot after that. So we've done everything we possibly can to get a result.
"We're playing a good team. We've taken four points off Spurs this year. We're trying to hang in there. Does (the result) help us? Probably not.
"But I said before today that if we had lost today we would still be right in the mix. What does a draw do? It shows we played well enough to get a point.
"Tottenham played well but in truth we should have nicked the game at the end. It was a really good game, with both sides trying to win."
Everton were not the only side to be missing important players, however, with the likes of Bale, Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe all missing from Andre Villas-Boas' matchday squad.
Moyes, however, believes the Portuguese's squad players stepped up to the mark and says Everton felt the absence of their stars more acutely.
"I think we missed our players more - Tottenham's players played really well today," the Scot added.
"I think with our squad to come away from Tottenham with a draw is fantastic. We were juggling with our players. We shouldn't be disappointed with a draw.
"We knew we had to win to stay in amongst the race for the Champions League spots. We've got tough games but Tottenham are as good as anybody so a draw here is encouraging.
"I'm disappointed not to take three points but not outrageously disappointed."
Villas-Boas insisted his side's top-four fate is still in their own hands, but pointed to upcoming clashes against Manchester City and Chelsea as crucial.
Despite only claiming four points from the last four Premier League games Tottenham remain in the Champions League qualification spots, but Villas-Boas has acknowledged strong displays against City and Chelsea will go a long way to deciding the team's end-of-season achievements.
"We probably have the second-worst run-in," he said.
"I think the race for the top four depends on our results against Manchester City and Chelsea. It looks like it will go down between these teams.
"Credit to Everton because of their organisation and how good they can be. In the end it was important for us to salvage a point against a team that was fighting for the same objectives as us.
"Everton are a strong team and they had good chances. If you give them a small amount of space they punish you and they did ever so well and were a great opponent. It was an entertaining game of football but I don’t agree that we relaxed."
Tottenham were without Bale after the attacker was ruled out for two weeks with an ankle injury, but Villas-Boas said he does not believe his absence was the sole reason they did not claim all three points.
"I think it is unfair to say we missed Gareth Bale today," the Portuguese added.
"We're not only missing Gareth, but Aaron Lennon and Sandro. This gives chances for other people to step up and we’ve seen them step up their level today; Sigurdsson, (Lewis) Holtby and Adebayor.
"I think we set up to try to win the game and it was difficult for us to accept the second half as we started brightly with intensity."