Sigurdsson's Sights Set Firmly On 'Big Weekend' For Blues

Gylfi Sigurdsson says being away for the international break will not affect the focus of Everton's players as they prepare for Sunday’s trip to Brighton and Hove Albion. 

The midfielder scored one and set up another as Iceland became the smallest nation ever to qualify for the World Cup finals with a 2-0 win over Kosovo on Monday.

However, the 28-year-old has had little time to ponder next summer’s tournament in Russia with Everton’s first trip to the Amex Stadium set to be swiftly followed by a vital Europa League game against Lyon and the visit of Arsene Wenger's Arsenal. 

“We need to get back to winning ways,” Sigurdsson told evertontv. “It was a disappointing result against Burnley last time out, so it’s very important for us to start picking up points and it would be nice to do that on Sunday. 

“It’s a big week for us. We’ve got three games now in the space of eight days or so, so it is important for us to start well and get a good result against Brighton. That will then take us into the next couple of games on Thursday and Sunday. 

“It’s just football at the end of the day, if you’re playing for your country or your club, so I think it’s quite easy for us to switch back into club football. We’re used to it and I think all the players will be ready on Sunday.” 

Sigurdsson’s strike in Reykjavik on Monday took his tally of goals in Iceland’s qualifying campaign to four and helped them secure top spot in Group I ahead of Croatia, Ukraine, Turkey and Finland. 

Fireworks burst from the roof of the Laugardalsvöllur stadium at the full-time whistle as the nation of 334,000 celebrated reaching the tournament for the first time in its history, just over a year after an unexpected journey to the last-eight of the European Championships in France. 

“It’s something we’ve all been waiting to see happen to Icelandic football - to actually go to the World Cup,” Sigurdsson added. “It’s happening now so it’s just an outstanding feeling and I think all of the players and the people of Iceland are really proud of it. We’ll be looking forward to going to Russia.

"It’s two major tournaments in a row now and that’s a great achievement for the country. 

“I’m very excited. It’s been a really good week for us, we had the celebrations on Monday night and we’re obviously delighted we’ve made it to the World Cup. 
“Leading up to the game you were hoping and wishing you could help the team with a goal, so it was a nice feeling to score in such an important game.”