Victor Anichebe insists the competition for places in Everton’s forward line will bring out the best in him and his striking compatriots this season.
Anichebe has returned from the summer break full of enthusiasm after his 32 appearances last term and an injury-free lead-up to the new campaign.
Effectively first choice following the turn of the year, the 25-year-old thrived in the second half of 2012/13, taking his tally of goals to a career-best eight.
Arouna Kone’s arrival and Nikica Jelavic’s pre-season hot-streak has stirred much debate over who boss Roberto Martinez will select to spearhead the Toffees' attack at Norwich City on Saturday.
Martinez himself believes all three frontmen will play a key part this season, saying his striking options put him in a ‘great position’ as a manager.
Anichebe is in full agreement – but stresses he has no intentions of giving up his place lightly.
He told evertontv: “Some people ask me ‘do you think you will play?’ but I’ve been at Everton since I was young and I want the team to do well.
“We have brought in more competition and it’s great for everyone. Everyone will be fighting for their place.
“I’m at that age where I need to get more consistency. I was happy with how last season went so hopefully this year I can carry on and do well.
“But we’ve got a lot of other great players. Whether I play or not is up to the manager but we’ll all be here fighting together.”
The long journey to Norwich was one of a small number of matches Anichebe sat out last season.
The Blues succumbed to a 2-1 defeat that February afternoon as the hosts netted twice in the final 10 minutes to steal an undeserved smash-and-grab victory.
With the Canaries strengthening their squad further with some big-money transfers, Anichebe is all too mindful that a trip to Carrow Road is far from the easiest of opening day outings.
He said: “I missed the game last year at Norwich but it's a difficult place to go to so we need to approach it as we always approach games - really professionally and expecting a really tough game.
“Chris Hughton is a great manager and he's gone in there and he's done really well and they've got a good support behind them.
“But we're a really good team as well. So, come the day, let's see what happens.”