David Unsworth described Everton's display in their 5-1 Europa League home defeat against Atalanta as unacceptable as his hopes of being given the manager's job took a hit.
The 44-year-old was placed in caretaker charge after Ronald Koeman's sacking and he has made no secret of his desire to be named permanent manager, but four defeats and one win in his six games at the helm to date is not helping his prospects.
When quizzed about his chances of remaining in the job after Thursday's European debacle, Unsworth said: "It is an honour for me to be a manager and lead this great club but at the same time you need your players to come with you and give you everything they've got.
"Other people will make decisions about who is the manager but I take that responsibility. At the same time when the players cross the white line they have to take responsibility.
"I've learned a lot about numerous players and that's good - but it doesn't feel good."
Everton had already been eliminated from the Europa League before the game at Goodison Park, but Unsworth said it was no excuse for the level of performance.
I'd like to think every single player is hurting the way I am at the moment and if they are not then they shouldn't be here at this great club.David Unsworth
Two goals apiece from Bryan Cristante and Andreas Cornelius, and one from Robin Gosens gave the Italian Serie A side a convincing win, while Joel Robles saved a penalty to avoid further embarrassment and Sandro Ramirez scored the Toffees' consolation goal.
It leaves Everton bottom of Group E with just one point and Unsworth said: "I'd like to think every single player is hurting the way I am at the moment and if they are not then they shouldn't be here at this great club.
"The minimum requirement is 100 per cent effort. Only those players will know themselves when they look themselves in the mirror at night.
"The players who have been asking me for opportunities to play in the first team were given that.
"I asked the players to make it difficult for me to leave them out of the team on Sunday and the majority have probably made it very easy for me.
"The manner we capitulated just isn't acceptable and the players know that."
Unsworth is likely to make several changes for Sunday's trip to Southamptomn in the Premier League with the Toffees 15/4 to bounce back with a win. The Saints are priced at 17/20 and the draw is 13/5.
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