Captain Phil Jagielka revealed he is determined to be part of an exciting Everton side bidding to “create special memories” after signing a one-year contract extension with the Club until the summer of 2019.
The 34-year-old defender has penned a new deal to extend his “fantastic” Blues stay – and immediately trained his sights on bringing silverware to Goodison.
The Toffees captain’s optimism has been fuelled by the Club’s signings this summer, a transfer window he rates as the most exciting since he joined Everton 10 years ago.
“I came back for pre-season and tried to get my fitness levels as high as possible, ready to compete for a place,” Jagielka told evertontv.
“It is always nice to have the potential of an extra year with the Club - and it did not take too long for me to decide to sign.
“I was delighted to do so and I am looking forward to the journey over the next two years.
“It has been a fantastic time here but, hopefully, we will create some more special memories in the next two years and I can look back on my time at Everton with a smile on my face.”
Everton have brought in seven new players so far this summer – goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, defenders Michael Keane and Cuco Martina, midfielder Davy Klaassen and forwards Wayne Rooney, Sandro Ramirez and Henry Onyekuru, who will spend next season on loan at Anderlecht.
With that talent added to Ronald Koeman’s first-team squad, Jagielka is eager to deliver silverware to the ambitious Blues.
“That is what you want to be part of,” he said. “The Club is moving forward. I do not think the transfer business is finished but it is good that we have got people in nice and early.
“For the Chairman to offer me the extra year - hopefully I can play my role, whatever that might be. First and foremost, I want to get myself in that team and do my bit on the pitch.
“Realistically, winning a trophy is an aim this season, next season… and into the future.
“We want to be competing for things.
“We have the European game coming up, we want to get through that, then we will look forward to competing in four competitions this season and performing in every one.”
Everton manager Ronald Koeman said: "With his commitment to the Club and more than 10 years of experience here at Everton, Phil is a natural captain and his continued level of fitness contributes also to him being a really important player for us.
"The fact that he has been an Everton player for a decade now underlines his character and why he is a player admired by many people, and also by the manager."
Everton go into Thursday’s Europa League third qualifying round second leg with MFK Ruzomberok holding a one-goal lead from the opening leg at Goodison last Thursday.
And while Jagielka admits his team would have preferred to be heading into the game with a greater advantage, he remains confident the Blues will successfully negotiate a demanding encounter in Slovakia.
“We would have liked one or two more goals to have made it a bit simpler over there,” added the centre half who has 40 England caps. “But maybe this is something we need. We have to make sure we are fully guarded about what can happen to us.
“We have had a couple of these games in Europe when you do not know much about the opposition and it becomes a really tough tie.
“We need to do a professional job. I am not sure they will change their approach dramatically, initially. They will not want to be too gung-ho from the first minute.
“But you saw how well they did in the second leg in Brann (in the previous round, when Ruzomberok overturned a 1-0 deficit) and managed to win 2-0, so we are fully aware of their capabilities and it is up to us to put to good use that extra week of pre-season training the boys have had – and come away with a positive result.”
>>> Click here to purchase a 2017/18 shirt with Jagielka printing now!