The catch-22 of Everton's hosting of Manchester City is not lost on Roberto Martinez, but he insisted they will be doing everything to win.
The Europe-chasing Everton can pave the way for bitter rivals Liverpool to win an elusive Premier League title by taking points away from City, who are in the box seat to win their second premiership in three years.
Anything but a victory for Martinez's Everton would rule them out of UEFA Champions League contention, although an Arsenal win over West Bromwich Albion on Sunday would end Everton's hopes regardless.
Four points separates Arsenal (fourth) from Everton, with the latter not yet assured of a UEFA Europa League spot, with Tottenham lurking three points back in sixth.
And Martinez said their own predicament is exactly what the club is worried about, not Liverpool's, as they look to bounce back from a poor 2-0 loss to Southampton at their last start.
"Liverpool can rest assured Goodison will be the toughest place for City to travel this season, that is for sure. This game is vital for us – we need the points," Martinez said.
"I am not insulted by the suggestion we will lie down, no. I just think it's more football rivalry, a bit of banter, which I can understand.
"I would be more hurt or insulted if we had nothing to play for. But we have too much to fight for. Fans have been saying, 'If we win, great. If we lose, it's not a problem'.
"But I don't think anyone at Everton would want their team to lose. We need one point to guarantee European qualification and want six points because the Champions League is still open. For us, it means everything to win this game."
Martinez understands the passion the fans have for the game, and the lack of love they have for their neighbours - recalling a timely anecdote involving this season's UEFA Champions League finalists Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.
"We played Atletico Madrid, who needed Real Madrid to win away at Tenerife for Atletico to get into Europe automatically. Madrid needed a victory to win the league," Martinez said, referring to the end of the 1992-93 La Liga season.
"But Madrid were losing and the Atletico crowd was going crazy, even though that meant they were not guaranteed Europe. I couldn't figure that one out.
"The line they used after the game was, 'We would rather lose one eye as long as the neighbours lose two.'"
However, Martinez pointed out that when he took his Wigan side to Stoke at the end of the 2010-11 campaign needing a win and the latter with 'nothing to play for', he was taken aback.
"We had to win that last game, and I thought they (Stoke) might be half-hearted because they had nothing to play for," he said.
"But they were going mad. Tony Pulis wanted to finish in the top 10. I'd never seen anything like it, but that is the British game and I love it. We should never lose that."
|Coach: Roberto Martínez|
for P. Jagielka 66'
for L. Osman 83'
|Ranieri sacking ´the biggest shock in a decade´|
|Wenger ´witch-hunt´ has gone too far, says Bilic|
|Lewandowski better than Benzema, Suarez, Costa - Matthaus|
|Sticks and Stones may break my bones - Man City defender unhurt by criticism|
|Atletico Madrid v Barcelona: Simeone´s men primed to land on punch-drunk Barca|
|Pogba no machine like Messi or Ronaldo, says Mata|
|Oxlade-Chamberlain adamant Arsenal ´more than capable of competing for title´|
|Monaco star Falcao was almost lost to baseball|
|FC Dallas 4 Arabe Unido 0: Champions League semis beckon for Americans|
|No gratitude in football - Spalletti saddened by Ranieri sacking|
|Alli not to blame for Tottenham´s Europa League exit - Pochettino|
|Mourinho pays tribute to axed Leicester boss Ranieri|
|Europa League Review: Spurs crash out, Stindl stuns Fiorentina, Lyon destroy AZ in record-equalling|
|Bastia punished over Balotelli abuse|
|Eriksen blames Tottenham´s shock Europa League exit on poor finishing|
|Ranieri sacking a brutal reminder of football´s necessary lack of sentiment|
|Tottenham 2 Gent 2 (2-3 agg): Alli sent off as Kane own goal sends Spurs out|
|Jokanovic signs new Fulham deal|
|Serie A top three setting ´incredible´ pace, says Eder|
|Ranieri sacked by Leicester City|
|Coutinho: Klopp lets us do whatever we want|
|Lampard to be honoured with Chelsea tribute|
|Bolasie set for second knee surgery|
|Rooney rejects Chinese fortune to stay at United|
|Falcao has silenced his critics - Jardim|
|Clement backs Mawson to shackle Chelsea stars ahead of ´special´ Stamford Bridge return|
|Happiness more important than money - Bacca rejects new China approach|
|Lewandowski the perfect number nine, says Jancker|
|Digne tips PSG for fifth consecutive Ligue 1 title|
|Cedric thinks Euro 2016 final will help against Manchester United|
|Infantino praises progress on Qatar 2022 worker conditions|
|Manchester United have strength in depth to win quadruple, says Young|
|Ibrahimovic on PSG´s Barca victory: Win or lose, they talk about me|
|Robbery, Thiago irreplaceable at Bayern - Matthaus|
|Griezmann will ´definitely´ join Manchester United, claims Petit|
|Manchester United selling Rooney now would be odd - Neville|
|Rooney named China´s fifth most popular player, Ronaldo on top|
|Payet always loved Marseille - Digne|
|Arsenal midfielder Cazorla set to miss rest of season|
|Alba wants Isco at Barcelona|
|Bilic worried injuries will derail Carroll´s England hopes|
|Aguero ability was never in doubt for Fernandinho|
|Nani thigh injury tempers Valencia´s Real Madrid joy|
|Matip confident Liverpool will make top four|
|Rooney still has the quality to play in Europe, says Bilic|
|Koscielny wants Wenger to stay at Arsenal|
|Pogba record will soon be broken - Kahn|
|Ramos hurting but calm after Real Madrid´s Valencia setback|
|De Boer would love to manage in the Premier League|
|Wenger criticism is impossible - Nasri defends embattled Arsenal boss|
|It´s good to talk - Sagna urges better communication from Manchester City defence|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: Vargas scores as Tigres UANL are held|
|Jovetic: We were much better than Leicester|
|Victory star Berisha set to debut for Kosovo|
|Pjaca keen for more chances after first Juve goal|
|Allegri hails ´champion´ Alves|
|´Going to China? Madness´ – Keane urges Rooney to stay in Europe|
|Nuno rues Telles red as Porto retain hope|
|Socceroos to host Brazil in Melbourne|
|Sampaoli rues Schmeichel heroics|
|Sevilla president unimpressed by ´unjust´ winning margin|
|Allegri praises Pjaca for attitude change|
|Mkhitaryan keeping fingers crossed over injury|
|Casillas left frustrated by Alex Telles red card|
|Anything can happen at King Power Stadium – Away goal lifts Schmeichel|
|Ranieri hails Leicester´s ´big heart´ in Sevilla loss|
|Krasnodar celebrate eighth anniversary by eliminating Fenerbahce|
|Home bird Rooney not suited to China - Phil Neville|
|Ramos rejects claims of bad Real Madrid attitude|
|Porto 0 Juventus 2: Substitutes Pjaca and Alves give Bianconeri command|
|Sevilla 2 Leicester City 1: Vardy´s strike tees up second leg after Schmeichel heroics|
|Madrid lead is not worth anything – Zidane|
|Dropped Bonucci must adapt to the rules – Marotta|
|I cannot do what Man City did at Chelsea - Mourinho withering over FA Cup schedule|
|Marcelo: Real Madrid must learn from horror start at Valencia|
|Manchester United head to Wembley brimming with confidence – Smalling|
|Valencia 2 Real Madrid 1: Zaza stunner hands title hope to Barcelona|
|Manchester United duo Mkhitaryan and Carrick set to miss EFL Cup final|
|Alba: Luis Enrique the best coach for Barca|
|Sorry for that poor guy - Sane apologises after costing punter huge windfall|
|Saint-Etienne 0 Manchester United 1 (0-4 agg): Mkhitaryan on target before injury scare|
|Kessie dreaming of Manchester United move|
|Kane refuses to blame ´incredible´ Wembley for Champions League exit|
|Mkhitaryan limps out of Manchester United Europa League clash|
|De Sciglio back in AC Milan training|
|Perez ´really comfortable´ after settling at Arsenal|
|Lallana signs three-year extension at Liverpool|
|Lyon have already discussed replacing Lacazette - Aulas|
|Low pleased to avoid fatigue after Euro 2016 campaign|
|Some teams are beaten before kick-off - Hazard hails Chelsea home form|
|AFC Champions League Review: Misery for history-making Yuen-ting, Ramires boosts Jiangsu|
|Spalletti not interested in Europa League favourites tag|
|Ventura: Balotelli´s latest signs not positive|
|Vela not expecting Real Sociedad Champions League return|
|Schone renews for two years at Ajax|
|Pochettino calls for patience in Tottenham trophy hunt|
|Demirbay earns two-year Hoffenheim extension|
|Origi eyeing first team place at Liverpool|
|Tottenham legend King encourages Alli to keep his edge|
|Pochettino: Spurs must wait for Rose return|
|Romero eyes Europa League title ahead of birthday trip to Saint-Etienne|
|Mowbray tasked with saving struggling Blackburn|
|Four more years? Celtic´s Dembele not stressing amid Real Madrid links|
|RB Leipzig or Salzburg Champions League ban ´hypothetical´ - UEFA|
|Manchester United have world-class players in every position - Forster|
|James: Zidane´s rotation does not affect Real Madrid|
|Redan to snub Manchester United and sign Ajax deal|
|Giovinco turned down China move ´for now´ - agent|
|Guardiola wanted to destroy Monaco´s 4-4-2, says Fabinho|
|Sagna hails Stones after ´vital´ Manchester City goal|
|Deulofeu loves AC Milan but future ´depends on Barcelona´|
|Monaco lacked intelligence, says frustrated Falcao|
|That is why Manchester City wanted me - Guardiola relishes Champions League thriller|
|Tianjin deny Rooney bid but admit Aubameyang talks|
|Deportivo Saprissa 0 Pachuca 0: Champions League quarter-final evenly poised|
|Gameiro angered by substitution in Atletico win|
|´I give nothing for free´ – Mourinho tells Shaw to learn from Mkhitaryan|
|Champions League quarter-finals still possible for Monaco, says Silva|
|Guardiola asks me for more, more, more - Aguero happy to fight on at Manchester City|
|It was like ice hockey - Monaco vice-president stunned by Champions League clash|
|Proud Griezmann eyes more Atletico history|
|Toure marvels at Caballero heroics in Manchester City-Monaco thriller|
|Buffon hopes to play well against Casillas|
|Schmidt: It is easy to see how Atletico Madrid have reached two finals in three years|
|Falcao penalty miss was key – Jardim|
|Guardiola: If one team can score a thousand, million goals it is Monaco|