David Moyes plays down link to Aston Villa

Everton boss David Moyes is bemused by reports linking him with Aston Villa.

Moyes' future has been the subject of recurring speculation this season but the Scot has continually insisted he is happy at Goodison Park.

That was again the case when asked today about the Villa rumours, which have arisen due to the ill health of current manager Gerard Houllier.

"It is nothing to do with me," said 48-year-old Moyes, who has been in charge at Goodison Park for nine years.

"I am at a great club and have got a great job. I don't know what to say."

Moyes was speaking at a press conference to preview his side's Barclays Premier League trip to Wigan tomorrow.

Everton are seventh in the table after finding form over the past two months.

The Toffees were unbeaten in seven games prior to last week's loss at Manchester United and their strong run is bringing a generally disappointing campaign to a positive conclusion.

Everton, restricted by a small squad and limited funds for transfers, spent most of the first half of the season in the bottom half.

Moyes said: "This is probably the position where most people would have put us. Most people would have said we'd be between fifth and eighth.

"I'm disappointed because I felt we could have gone one better than that.

"But there is still enough to play for, we have tried to emphasise to the players it is important we stay near the top.

"That is where we want to be and I have not seen any signs from the players to suggest they think any different."

Everton end the season with home games against Manchester City and Chelsea, either side of a match at West Brom.

First they must tackle Wigan, who are anxious for points at the bottom end of the table.

Moyes said: "They are always pretty tough games against Wigan.

"Roberto (Martinez) always gets his team playing in a good footballing style, but I am sure at the moment winning is the key.

"We had a spell six or eight weeks ago when I felt we had to make sure we won.

"Luckily we did and when you get those wins it brings a bit of confidence back to the team and the squad and hopefully your performances can improve.

"Just over a week ago Wigan came out of the bottom three for the first time in a long while and they will know they are not far away from that."

Everton playmaker Mikel Arteta could return after five games out with a hamstring injury having trained this week.

Midfielder Tim Cahill is likely to be involved but again only as a substitute as he continues his recovery from a foot injury.

The Australian came off the bench at Old Trafford after sitting out six out of the previous seven games.

The 31-year-old has endured a gruelling schedule having played in the World Cup and Asian Cup in the past year.

Moyes said: "It is concerning because it is one of these things that may go tomorrow or it might still be there in three months' time.

"It is something that tends to just burn itself out and get better in time."

The Toffees side will feature two players with Wigan links in in-form duo Leighton Baines and Leon Osman.

England left-back Baines came through the ranks at Athletic before moving on to Goodison while dynamic midfielder Osman was born and has family in the area.

Moyes said: "Leighton Baines has improved no end from when we took him.

"He was a good player at Wigan and that is what got us looking at him and signing him.

"It took him a while to settle but he has grown into it and got better.

"Now I think most people think if there was a World Cup this year, Leighton Baines would be a certainty to go.

"Ossie has played really well and nearly carried us, certainly in the creativity department.

"He has got a couple of important goals for us and probably relished that, with Mikel, Tim and Felli [Marouane Fellaini] being out of the team and the loss of Steven Pienaar.

"A lot of the focus has gone onto Ossie and to be fair to him he has taken the mantle and done it really well."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Books should be for everyone, says Els, 8. Publisher Scholastic now agrees
booksAn eight-year-old saw a pirate book was ‘for boys’ and took on the publishers
Life and Style
Mary Beard received abuse after speaking positively on 'Question Time' about immigrant workers: 'When people say ridiculous, untrue and hurtful things, then I think you should call them out'
tech
Life and Style
Most mail-order brides are thought to come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania
life
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Voices
Margaret Thatcher, with her director of publicity Sir Gordon Reece, who helped her and the Tory Party to victory in 1979
voicesThe subject is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for former PR man DJ Taylor
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions