REUTERS - Everton manager Ronald Koeman has urged his side to make a late push for the Champions League qualification spots but at the same time be wary of the teams below them in the Premier League.
Everton are seventh in the table and moved to within six points of fourth-placed Arsenal, who hold the final Champions League qualification spot and have a game in hand, after Saturday’s comfortable 2-0 victory over bottom side Sunderland.
“The worst situation for a football player is you play for nothing. Yeah, (we want) the highest position but I like to play for something,” Koeman told British media.
“Above us is still a gap but it is never ending, when it is five or six points it is still possible to reach them. But the first team behind us is West Brom (four points back) and we get West Brom at home in two weeks.”
Koeman also praised Romelu Lukaku after the Belgium striker equalled the club record of 60 Premier League goals set by Duncan Ferguson, who is part of the Dutchman’s backroom staff.
“Rom went to Duncan and, of course, Duncan knows that Romelu will beat his record,” Koeman added.
“I think he will be happy when the record is broken because that means Lukaku is scoring and, normally, if he scores goals it gives the team three points.”
Everton travel to face second-placed Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru