Seamus Coleman believes Everton can secure European qualification this season after a spectacular upturn in form over the past six weeks.
Only Liverpool have picked up more points than the Toffees since Carlo Ancelotti’s appointment as manager, with their only league defeat coming at the hands of Manchester City.
Seamus Coleman has backed Everton to finish in the top six this season
In the first portion of the campaign under Marco Silva, Everton only managed to pick up 14 points from 15 Premier League matches.
Ancelotti, meanwhile, has secured that same total in just seven games, and speaking to talkSPORT earlier this week Coleman backed the Merseysiders to break into the top six.
“We’re looking towards the European places,” said Coleman. “Our league form has been very good, so hopefully we can achieve that.
“We’re only three points off the top six and we’re playing a lot better now.
“That’s got to be the aim when you play for a football club of this stature. It’s funny how things can change, but we need to maintain the form we’ve been showing.”
On the impact Ancelotti has made since arriving at the club, Coleman added: “I never like to see any manager go.
Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti has lost just one of his opening seven Premier League games
“But since Duncan [Ferguson] and the boss now [Ancelotti] have come in we’ve had a great run of fixtures.
“His CV speaks for itself. The lads come in for training and are eager to listen and learn from him.
“He’s made little tweaks in training; it’s been really competitive and enjoyable.
“He probably came in to a better set-up than he imagined, so Duncan deserves great credit, too.”
Coleman stressed the importance of giving back to the wider community when speaking at the latest Everton in the Community event on Thursday.
The Republic of Ireland skipper has been a passionate supporter of the initiative ever since he arrived at Goodison Park from Sligo Rovers 11 years ago.
“It’s been an ongoing project at the club for many years,” explained Coleman. “We’ve always had Everton in the Community and it’s something the players all get involved in.
“All the cameras are here today, but it’s something we do on a regular basis. It’s great to be able to come and put on a smile on the children’s faces. That’s the most important thing.
Seamus Coleman talks up Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s chances of earning an England call-up
“We always have a meeting to remind the lads of what Everton in the Community do.
“We’re very fortunate with the changing room we have. We’ve had a few ups and downs over the years, but the characters we’ve brought in over the years have been great.
“Lucas [Digne] and Richarlison are great people and they really enjoy this element of our job.
“It’s so, so important when you play for this football club that you give your all on the pitch, but also off it, and the bigger picture of that is Everton in the Community and helping change people’s lives.”
Everton in the Community is the official charity of Everton Football Club and one of the UKs top sporting charities. This weekends fixture against Crystal Palace is Everton in the Communitys designated birthday fixture and the charity will be celebrating 32 years of supporting those in need across Merseyside.