Everton manager David Moyes admits the club's Champions League chances are probably over but that will not stop him pushing his squad hard until the end of the season.
Moyes accepts that the seven points between his side and fourth place may be too much to overcome, but there is still plenty to play for with an FA Cup semi-final coming up against Manchester United and European qualification still to secure.
"Losing at Portsmouth may well have made our Champions League qualification difficult with Arsenal winning but we will keep hanging on in there and hopefully try to catch them if we can," said Moyes.
He added: "Those results make it doubly difficult but Arsenal still have Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea to play, that was why I was hoping to stay within four points of them.
"At the moment they are seven ahead so that is quite a gap."
Moyes, however, will urge his players to maintain the pressure just in case Arsene Wenger's side slip up.
"I don't know if I can say it is the final furlong yet because there is quite a way to go with the season going on until the end of May," he added.
"We want that final push if we can and we want the players to carry on doing what they have been doing because they have been very good up to now.
"We want that excitement to remain. The job is to keep it that way; that means getting to a cup final, hanging in there in the league and qualifying for Europe, because for me that is a big thing to do.
"If we can do that we can look back and decide whether it is a positive season or not."
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms