PHIL JAGIELKA believes Everton are giving themselves a chance of becoming the latest team to capitalise on the “crazy” Premier League by snatching Champions League qualification.
David Moyes’s side stayed in touch with the top four with a battling 1-1 draw at champions Manchester City on Saturday.
With Chelsea, West Bromwich Albion and Arsenal all losing at the weekend, Everton are now only three points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, who they entertain on Sunday.
And despite recording their seventh draw in nine Premier League games, Jagielka is convinced the Goodison outfit are in position to capitalise on the poor form of their main rivals.
“It is going to be quite wide open,” said the centre-back. “The last few seasons, the Premier League has gone a little bit crazy, with teams finishing almost anywhere.
“The title has been between two or three teams but the Champions League is there for anyone. Tottenham have done it, Newcastle had a crack at it.
“We have only got to look back at the last two seasons to see how we have started. We haven’t given ourselves a chance.
“We aren’t favourites to finish fourth by any stretch of the imagination but at least we are in the mix. It’s no good if you are having to claw back a 20-point gap at Christmas.”
Jagielka added: “Whether we are underestimated or not, we have still not got a very big squad. We don’t have that many options on the bench.
“Maybe that is why people are not talking us up. But is doesn’t bother us. The squad isn’t going to get much bigger, so it will be all down to how the manager manages us.”