Phil Jagielka says Everton are confident that they can deal with the rigours of competing at both home and abroad ahead of their return to Europe on Thursday night.
The Toffees (20.00 Europa League Outright) were excellent last term, finishing fifth in the final Premier League standings, narrowly missing out on a Champions League place and now have the chance to strut their stuff on the continent courtesy of the Europa League.
Roberto Martinez’s men begin their campaign at Goodison Park against German side Wolfsburg, a clash they are priced at 1.97 to win, with the draw at 3.42 and the visitors on offer at 3.13 and will also meet Lille and Krasnodar in Group H.
Since joining Everton in 2007, captain Jagielka has still to win his first trophy for the club but having played at the World Cup over the summer, he now has his eyes on silverware and says the whole squad are ready for the challenge of testing themselves in Europe.
“You tune into the latter stages of the Europa League and you see the teams involved, why would you not want to be one of those teams?” he told the Liverpool Echo. “We’re desperate to do as well as we can. We put a lot of faith in the manager picking the right team, using the squad as well as he can.
“One of our main aims was Europe. We would like to have snuck a few more points and had a couple of qualifying games in the Champions League, but we’re still progressing really well and the manager has put a squad together now that we feel we can deal with the extra competition and we are really delighted to be here and raring to go.”