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Everton's late push for a top four place was given a much needed boost last night as the Toffees picked up a 3-0 win away at Newcastle United, whilst fourth placed Arsenal could only muster a draw at home to struggling Swansea after Mathieu Flamini's injury time own goal. Everton boss Roberto Martinez is hopeful that his side can pick up the points to break into the top four from now to the end of the season.
“The three points are really important but that’s not the end of the season,” Martinez said. “We’ve been working really hard for the last 10 months and you can see the team is ready to give everything in every game and make every single Evertonian proud. We’ll see how many points that gives us."
The Everton players are beginning to believe that they can find enough to points to leapfrog Arsenal, with the Gunners now just six points ahead - and Everton still have a game in hand to play too. Midfielder Leon Osman still believes that Everton are the outsiders in the race for fourth, and need to pick up more points on the road, but also maintains hope of a top four finish.
“We have got to play some of the big teams yet and we are certainly vying for it ourselves. We are the outsiders at the minute, but we are going to keep ticking along and see how close we can get," he said.
“We had back-to-back wins before last night and we were desperate to make it three on the run. It’s important that we have started to pick up points away from home to get us in the direction we are going for," added Osman.
In other news, Everton have allowed young winger Matthew Kennedy to leave the club on loan again, this time to MK Dons. The 19-year-old has already spent time with Tranmere Rovers this term, but will now spend the rest of the season with their fellow League One side.