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Crystal Palace (A) Sat 31 Jan 2015, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Blues Would Embrace Europa

by Matthew Gamble @efc_mattgamble

Roberto Martinez says Everton would embrace Europa League competition next season.

While the Blues boss has not given up hope of reaching the top four, he insists that qualification for the continent's secondary competition is something he would cherish.

In recent years some English sides have treated the Europa League with disdain, insisting they'd rather not be in it and regularly fielding largely changed sides.

That wouldn't be the case at Everton though.

Martinez said: "It wouldn't be a hindrance, not at all. Qualifying for Europe for us would be a massive step forward because it would bring massive football occasions that I do feel we need to be able to develop into the type of team we want to be.

"Getting into Europe is a big objective and something that would allow us to grow as a football club. All you need to do is at the beginning of the season plan the campaign, bearing in mind you are going to be in Europe and that brings extra demands."

Everton are currently nine points off the top four but do have games in hand and fixtures against the teams above to come.

And the manager said: "We have 48 points and that is a good return. Can we get top four? Mathematically we can. You look at the points tally you might need to get in those positions and that is still achievable.

"It would depend as well on how the other clubs react to being - or not being - in Europe. Many aspects are going to affect the points tally needed to be in the top four. After that you have the Europa Leaugue to fight for." 

Everton are seeking two home wins in the next two home game against Cardiff on Saturday and Swansea the following weekend to boost their European aspirations.

You can buy tickets for both games online by clicking here or by telephone on 0871 663 1878*.

Alternatively, visit the Park End Box Office at Goodison Park, Everton One in Liverpool Two or TicketQuarter in Queen Square.

To see opening hours for all our ticket outlets, click here.

And don't forget, 2014/15 Season Tickets are now on sale. For more information or to secure one of the best views for next campaign, click here.

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