Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard has set his sights on winning silverware this season, as the Toffees return to European competition for the first time since 2010 in Thursday’s Europa League tie against Wolfsburg.
Speaking to Everton’s official website, the American reminisced about the club’s previous involvement in European competition since he arrived from Manchester United nearly a decade ago.
Return of European football at Goodison
“When I first came here nine years ago, it seemed like almost every year we were in Europe and it’s good to be back there.
“Those evening games under the lights will be good for our fans and I don’t kid you when I say we are going to try and lift a cup this season.
“We don’t care whether that’s in Europe, the FA Cup or whatever – and we’re going to try and go well in the league too.”
The club’s Capital One Cup campaign also kicks off next Tuesday against Gary Monk’s Swansea City, with the FA Cup starting in January.
Tough group awaits the Toffees
As well as Wolfsburg, the Toffees will also have to face French outfit Lille and FC Krasnodar of Russia if they want to have the chance of progressing from their group.
The club have manager Roberto Martinez to thank for their renewed participation in Europe after an excellent fifth place Premier League finish last season; trumping the previous manager David Moyes’ sixth place in his last campaign.
Martinez maintains the same mission statement
Howard went on to say that as well as getting into Europe, the club will make a mark with their expressive playing style.
“Not only should we just make Europe, we should make some noise and that’s what the gaffer wants to do,” he said.
“The fact that the winners get a Champions League spot is a small incentive for me. Lifting that cup would be brilliant.
“We have the squad and the talent. We know there will be some tough nights but we will enjoy it.”
Everton’s only previous involvement in the Champions League came in the 2004-5 season when they failed to make it beyond the qualifying round after getting beaten by 2-1 by Villarreal.
Howard will certainly be hoping that Thursday’s tie with Wolfsburg will kick-start a cup run that ultimately ends in glory and entry to Europe’s top table at the end of the season.