Southampton defender Jose Fonte says that he wants to guide the side into the top-four in the near future.
Charlie Nicholas has told Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday that he doesn't believe there is any chance that Southampton will be able to break into the Champions League qualification places within the next three years.
The Saints came close to making it into the top-four in the 2014/15 campaign, but fell away towards the end of the season.
This time around, they are currently perched in eighth position in the Premier League table after a bright start, and Jose Fonte has stated that his aim is to help the side break into the top-four within the next three seasons, in the Daily Echo.
However, Nicholas feels that getting into the Champions League qualification spaces is too much of an ask for Southampton.
“Anything is achievable, but I still think there is a bit of distance between Southampton and the top four,” he said.
“It’s a tough league to get through. Defensively they are still learning the ropes, so there’s a bit more to come yet.
“The thing I do like about Southampton is that they can go long, and they can play attractive passing. They can do both.”
Southampton ended up finishing last season in seventh place, and they were left 10 points behind the top four.
The Saints have added to their squad over the summer, but keeping pace with the Premier League's Champions League-chasing group is a very difficult task.
At the moment, Ronald Koeman’s side are six points behind fourth placed Manchester United, meaning that they would have to be in brilliant form over the remainder of the campaign to claim a Champions League spot.