Seamus Coleman says that Everton have their sights on possibly qualifying for Europe since the significant uptick in their form since early December.
The Blues have turned their faltering season around under the interim management of Duncan Ferguson and new full-time boss Carlo Ancelotti and currently sit in seventh place in the Premier League, just three points off fifth place, albeit having played one more game than all the teams around them with the exception of Sheffield United.
The rest of their rivals for the top-six or seven places will play this coming weekend as the split winter-break schedule continues but regardless of how results go, Everton are now very much part of the conversation around qualification for the Europa League.
“We've got to push for Europe,” Coleman told evertontv. “I think this club needs European football and we all want that.
“Especially here at Goodison, playing under the lights, it's exciting. It's something different. It's what we want for the Football Club.
“Where this football club wants to get in the next three, four, five years, it has to be wanting European football every year and if we can get it this year, that's a bonus.
“The mood around the training ground is great. If confidence is high and you're getting good results, the mood is always good.
“We're trying to catch those European places. A few months ago, we probably didn't think that was possible. But we're playing well now and just looking forward to every game.
Reader Comments (39)
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1 Posted 12/02/2020 at 07:26:57
We have gone from looking like a really poor team to one that just needs to strengthen in a few key areas. Although Arsenal are not doing that great results-wise, it is still a hard match at a stadium where we have “never ever won”.
2 Posted 12/02/2020 at 08:35:21
3 Posted 12/02/2020 at 08:58:47
4 Posted 12/02/2020 at 09:35:09
Sod it, Go for it, go for Chelsea's Champions League spot. 5 points in 12 games... make it so, Carlo.
5 Posted 12/02/2020 at 10:23:32
A well organised Premier League club should be able to prepare for July starts in Europa League qualifiers.
In 2017, Ronald Koeman spent more time on the golf course whilst Steve Walsh cocked up transfers rather than properly prepare for the Euro campaign.
The qualifying rounds should be tailor-made for the squad players and young players, everyone raves about the likes of Anthony Gordon, Ellis Simms or Beni Baningime so use these players in the Europa League, mixed with some experience.
Coleman is right: this club needs European football, there are far too few big games at Goodison Park these days. Imagine what a run in Europe would do to generate interest.
6 Posted 12/02/2020 at 10:49:49
It is certainly true that the club needs European football experience to prepare us for what, hopefully, can be a Champions League debut in a year or two!
7 Posted 12/02/2020 at 11:28:24
There is no point qualifying for the Champions League if it means we get hammered because we are not prepared.
We now have a manager who knows what European football is, and how to win it.
Also, winning the Europa would go down as one of the club's greatest achievements so should be a target.
It won't be easy, and we are outsiders still, and one game at a time and all that, but what a change of perspective, the season still has meaning.
8 Posted 12/02/2020 at 11:40:18
Back in the real world of expected outcomes: 7 points out of those 12 would be an amount that keeps us well in the mix for Europa League qualification. A win at Arsenal would set it up nicely.
I cannot understand comments that Europa League qualification is a ball and chain. Use it to our advantage by giving opportunities and great experience to the best of our youngsters, give fringe players the chance to shine and force their way into the first team. Use it to reintroduce players coming back to full fitness. All that mixed in with a few regulars.
In our dark winters, a bit of midweek entertainment is welcome respite.
9 Posted 12/02/2020 at 12:15:33
Personally I'd rather have 6 games in the Champions League group phase than an extended run in the Europa League.
In the Europa League, you don't come up against any real quality until the quarter-finals, it's a complete waste of effort up to that point. Whereas 6 games in the Champions League, crash bang & wallop! You never know what might happen, especially after we've been strengthened in the summer.
If there's any manager out there who can guide and get results for us in the Champions League, it's Don Carlo.
Wouldn't that be a miracle? Bottom three Christmas and Champions League qualification at end of season!
10 Posted 12/02/2020 at 12:57:12
Still, Europa League would do to get our toes in the water. The next four games will tell us a lot really and, if we can get a decent points tally from them, we should hopefully be able to do it.
11 Posted 12/02/2020 at 13:21:43
Matchday 35 is going to be a pivotal one though! Wolves vs Everton, Sheffield Utd vs Chelsea, and Spurs vs Arsenal.
12 Posted 12/02/2020 at 13:32:43
But qualifying for the Europa League would represent tangible progress on the last two seasons' 8th-place finishes.
At the end of the day, Moshiri has been here and spending big since 2016, whatever way you look at it, we are behind in terms of where we all thought we would be in 2020, due to poor management and player recruitment.
The Europa League just six months into Ancelotti ‘s tenure here would be progress.
Next season winning a Cup and having a serious tilt on the Champions League places would be the next step.
13 Posted 12/02/2020 at 15:44:17
Europa League??? Why set our sights so low? 4th is still very much "up for grabs" as I see it. Spurs, Man Utd and Chelsea are all hit and miss. Sheff Utd's bubble will burst. Wolves will drop away if they continue in the Europa League.
Come on, Blues. Go for the Champions League spot.
14 Posted 12/02/2020 at 16:00:35
By aiming for the Champions League, the runners-up prize will automatically become the Europa League. It's a win or place with the same bet.
I do believe our club badge has something to say on the subject along the same lines.
It looks like we're the only ones shooting for the stars?
15 Posted 12/02/2020 at 16:22:21
But as others (myself included) have pointed out, the next four games are monumental for a potential outside chance of top four.
Is anything possible under Carlo Ancelotti?
Has he brought about a long lost winning mentality?
Well Everton have not recorded a win at Arsenal since 1996 so if we were to defeat the Gunners in their own back yard I might start believing anything is possible.
Out of those four games theres only the Liverpool game which looks (for every club at the minute not just us) unwinnable at present but who knows?
Arsenal, Chelsea and United are all more than beatable but its up to the players at Everton to go and show it.
16 Posted 12/02/2020 at 16:25:34
I grew up watching Everton compete for everything. We had two poor goalkeepers. Mad Mike Lyons at centre half a few other also-ran players.
We had Bob Latchford, Martin Dobson and Duncan McKenzie. All seemed possible. Why do some Blues feel we shouldn't be at the very top. We're Everton, not Exeter.
Why do some Blues feel we shouldn't be at the very top. We're Everton, not Exeter.
17 Posted 12/02/2020 at 17:10:37
I think Arsenal have a longer unbroken spell in the top division than us. But we are 2nd to Arsenal who have never been relegated I believe.
18 Posted 12/02/2020 at 17:25:57
Interestingly (and possible pub quiz answer here) Arsenal are the only team not to have won promotion to the top division, instead being elected to Division 1 in 1919.
19 Posted 12/02/2020 at 17:28:14
Here's some info:
20 Posted 12/02/2020 at 17:39:34
Anyway, it's a risk for the clubs (comparable with taking out a mortgage to help with your cash flow). There are also other clubs who do this, and with other companies, but whose transactions are not registered with Companies House.
Interest rates of 6%-7% - so the article points to the risks involved.
Macquarie says that in an ideal world the club owner takes on the form of a benevolent dictator and gifts the club the money through an interest-free loan "like Farhad Moshiri has done at Everton. But they are much harder to find".
21 Posted 12/02/2020 at 18:54:02
22 Posted 12/02/2020 at 19:09:44
23 Posted 12/02/2020 at 20:10:55
24 Posted 12/02/2020 at 20:14:31
25 Posted 12/02/2020 at 20:38:36
Its already been said but its up to the players to finally believe, and to realise what is expected now we have a top manager instead of a yts coach.
We are as good as anyone else in this current league. Finally the £20-£40 million players are looking like they are worth it. Its a big if but if Schneiderlin can keep his form up and we can get Gomes firing, along with our top 2 we are in with a shout. Confidence is a fine asset to have.
26 Posted 12/02/2020 at 20:57:42
I have never been a fan of these or International Breaks either, but unfortunately it looks like they will be a regular and unwelcomed hiatus in the seasons ahead.
By the way, are you Schneiderlin's PR man or agent? :-)
27 Posted 12/02/2020 at 21:30:10
Getting on with your team mates
Believing in the coach
Believing that every game is winnable
Getting some lucky points
None of these and other factors are about ability, they are about making players confident enough to achieve their very best. Carlo, seems to be doing that. Our best, fit, eleven is very good. We are not far away.
28 Posted 12/02/2020 at 22:13:03
29 Posted 12/02/2020 at 22:30:27
This is the start of a difficult run of games but this I see as our best chance of an away win; Man Utd winnable at home; Chelsea is winnable... and then Liverpool.
But Liverpool are beatable and can be beaten, and I'd love us to stick one on them... But Everton is what counts and let the rest worry about us.
30 Posted 12/02/2020 at 23:02:14
31 Posted 12/02/2020 at 23:54:03
Liverpool are about to win the league (22 points ahead) and still talk about taking each game as it comes.
We are not even in the European places and we set our sights 10 games ahead
There's a real mentality problem with our players. It's mainly because they're stupid and mentally weak.
Just concentrate on one game at a time, eh?
32 Posted 13/02/2020 at 01:25:08
This is Everton we are talking about... Just when you think we are going to do something, they kick you in the nuts.
5 points from the next four games will be a good return. Europe? You're having a laugh...
33 Posted 13/02/2020 at 05:23:06
34 Posted 13/02/2020 at 10:11:53
Michael, Lyndon, shut it down until next Saturday, post up a picture of a lagoon and a swaying palm tree for 10 days.
35 Posted 14/02/2020 at 07:37:56
I really believe players like Dowell and Baningime would be much further along in their development if theyd had the opportunity to play in the Everton first team alongside experienced players over the last couple of years. Its looking like neither player will end up as Everton first teamers now, but at one stage it looked like both would. More competitive games should help us avoid the problem with other young players coming through.
36 Posted 14/02/2020 at 08:00:20
Dowell has been a player I have followed with interest, believing that there was a star in there somewhere, but too often he has flattered to deceive. When he has had a chance in most pre-season games, he has failed to impress.
Equally when he has been on loan, he has set the world alight in his first couple of appearances, then extinguished in the weeks that followed. So I don't know whether it's his attitude, his reluctance to commit himself on a regular basis, or whether he is happy just to plod along and make a tidy living without hitting the big time.
37 Posted 15/02/2020 at 11:43:44
38 Posted 15/02/2020 at 11:45:41
39 Posted 15/02/2020 at 11:53:06
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