Everton caretaker David Unsworth said his side's first-half performance against Leicester City "wasn't acceptable" and called for the club's next permanent manager to be given time to address the team's problems.
Goals from Jamie Vardy and Demarai Gray inside the first half hour at King Power Stadium put paid to Everton's hopes of avoiding a seventh consecutive game without a win in all competitions, but Unsworth was pleased with the improvement he saw in the second half.
The interim boss said Everton's performance in a 2-1 League Cup defeat at Chelsea in midweek had shown promise, but admitted they failed to play on the front foot at Leicester.
"Whoever gets the honour of being Everton manager, myself included, does need time with this set of players," Unsworth told Sky Sports.
"Every coach has ideas of how you'd like to play - I certainly do - but you do need time."
"The second half was much better, and the positivity the way we wanted to play on the front foot was there for all to see.
"But we gave them a head start and in the first half we didn't perform. Formations and tactics can go out of the window if you don't play on the front foot. For some reason we didn't do that in the first half."
Unsworth is likely to remain in charge of Everton as they travel to France to face Lyon in the Europa League on Thursday, and the former Toffees defender insisted he would continue to pick the team based on form rather than reputation.
Asked whether Everton's expensive new signings were struggling to cope with the pressure of life at Goodison Park, Unsworth said: "The players don't set the price tag but obviously there's a lot of new players in the team.
"I just picked the team, with fresh eyes, from what we felt was the best team to go and try and win.
"The performance level at Chelsea was terrific. Today the first half wasn't acceptable, but we reacted and didn't get a goal that maybe our possession would suggest.
"I'll pick a team based on who I think deserves to play, not reputation."