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I'll take Everton into top four – Martinez


New Everton manager Roberto Martinez. Photo: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

New Everton manager Roberto Martinez. Photo: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

New Everton manager Roberto Martinez. Photo: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

ROBERTO MARTINEZ pledged to bring Champions League football to Goodison Park after he was unveiled as the new Everton boss.

Martinez, who led Wigan to the FA Cup last season, has signed a four-year contract to replace Manchester United-bound David Moyes.

Moyes led the Toffees to the Champions League just once during a much-lauded 11-year reign, but an ambitious Martinez is ready to plot the club's return.

Toffees chairman Bill Kenwright, who flanked Martinez at a press conference yesterday, revealed one of the 39-year-old's first assurances was to take the club to the Champions League.

"When David (Moyes) first came to see me, he sat down 11 years ago and we were in a bad state, and he said, 'We're not going down'," said Kenwright.

"Almost Roberto's first words to me were, 'I'll get you in the Champions League'."

Martinez denied that represented any immediate pressure on his shoulders, clarifying that any lofty ambitions would take time to realise.

Everton have been dwarfed by the spending power of their major Premier League rivals, and while Kenwright has pledged to back his new man in the transfer market, Martinez admitted he will have to be creative.

"The chairman hasn't put any pressure on me," he said. "We have a very strong team and over the next few months we need to get together and make sure we are a winning side.

"Finishing in the top six was magnificent for Everton but we need to achieve more.

"There are six (Premier League) teams who are competing at a different financial level to the others.

"What is true is not always that you need the money to achieve your aims. The aim for Everton should be to get into the Champions League.

"That doesn't mean next season but that has to be the aim for the future. We want to be involved in Europe and the Champions League, and we have to have the dream to fight for."

One of Martinez's first jobs will be to persuade the likes of Leighton Baines and Marouane Fellaini, both linked with moves away, to stay.

Kenwright insists no players have asked to leave and he is confident that will remain so. And he also pledged to back his new manager financially. "I'll give him a few quid to spend. The others are not for sale. We don't want them to go, they have worked massively hard for this club," he added.

Martinez said he was ready to embrace the challenge of taking the club to the next level.

He left Wigan after four years which ended with him not only winning the FA Cup but also getting relegated.

"It is a real special day to come to Everton and have this feeling already of excitement and honour and I'd like to thank the chairman for this opportunity," he said.

"There is huge pressure but I am extremely proud of that pressure because it means what David Moyes did in 11 years is set high standards and lay an incredible platform.

"I feel lucky to be able to carry on that work."

Martinez has been linked with moves for some of his former players including midfielder James McCarthy and forwards Arouna Kone and Callum McManaman.