John Giles dismissed recent criticism of Seamus Coleman's performances as simply being down to the Ireland captain being an "easy target".
Earlier this month, with Everton 3-0 down at half-time to Spurs, Jamie Carragher said, "Seamus Coleman, I actually feel sorry for him, he's been a great full-back for Everton, but right now this is happening far too much, where people are just running in behind him."
"I wouldn't take into consideration too much what Jamie Carragher would say, to be quite honest", Giles told The Stand with Eamon Dunphy.
"What's happened with Seamus Coleman is Everton are having a bad time. People in the newspapers will say, 'Right, we have to get a reason for that', and they usually pick out the eldest player who's been around for a long time. That happens to be Seamus Coleman.
"He's 33, it's an easy target - 'He's the eldest man, he's past it, and is making mistakes'. I haven't seen that. Of course, he's made a few mistakes, Everton are in a terrible state, and Seamus Coleman will always come to the fore to do what he can about that situation. He's always going to be a target.
'Seamus Coleman is a great character'
"I thought he played really, really well at the weekend [against Belgium]. Anytime I've seen him for Everton - and Everton sometimes have been rubbish - he's still one of the better players.
"Seamus Coleman is a great character. He's always out there, always giving his best. He loves the game, loves playing for his country, loves playing for Everton. Usually, those type of players are the ones that will receive the criticism because all the other guys at Everton, who are not doing their stuff, are not getting out there to make mistakes.
"I've seen it before when players get a little bit older, they don't play as well as they have done, and people say he's the one at fault.
"When a team is having a bad time, the players who don't do it, hide - they get out of the way. The really good lads stand out there and get all the criticism. I think that's what's happened with Seamus.
"It hasn't happened with the Irish team. There's been no criticism that I've heard of really with the Irish team. It's with Everton. Everton are having a bad time. People would want to look around at 10 or 11 other players in the Everton team. I could name a few of them, but I won't name them now, but one of them wouldn't be Seamus Coleman."
Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile