Roberto Martinez: When you are Everton, there are certain standards to reach

Roberto Martinez’s pre-match comments ahead of Everton’s FA Cup tie with AFC Bournemouth.

Roberto Martinez: When you are Everton, there are certain standards to reach
Picture source: Everton's Facebook account

Everton travel south to face Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth and manager Roberto Martinez is targeting progression in the FA Cup

With teams such as Liverpool, Leicester City and Stoke City already crashing out of the FA Cup, and Chelsea and Manchester City facing each other this weekend, Martinez says the nature of this season competition means his side "are not far away."

The Blues have been without silverware for nearly 21 years and it has been one of Martinez’s targets since he became Everton boss. 

Martinez on the FA Cup

The FA Cup is a trophy Roberto Martinez has already lifted in his managerial career and says that his side is aiming to do that this season. 

A win over AFC Bournemouth would put the Blues into the Quarter Finals, getting them "very, very close to Wembley" as Martinez said. The Toffees boss also said that his side "respect" the FA Cup because they know how "important" it is to the fans. 

Martinez said this is a competition they don’t take lightly but his side are still a long way away from success. 

Martinez on end of season targets

Picking up the FA Cup means European qualification, but Roberto Martinez says his Everton also want to do that via the Premier League.

The Blues have struggled in the Premier League this season picking but have fared well in cup competitions. A Capital One Cup semi-finals appearance for the first time in just under ten years is something Martinez is looking to add to. 

In the Premier League table, the Blues sit only six points away from the Europa League positions and with 12 games to go, Martinez says his side are "mentally ready" to compete for those places. 

He said that is the "aim" of the squad and they are "ready to fight" for it. 

Photo: Everton FC Facebook

Martinez on Joel Robles

Joel Robles will continue in goal for Everton like he does in cup competitions but Roberto Martinez let on that the Spaniard is the Blue’s new first-choice keeper. 

Martinez complimented the keeper saying it has been a "really good period" since he came in to the side and replaced Tim Howard. Robles has kept three clean sheets and has only been beaten once in the Premier League, against West Bromwich Albion last weekend

Rumours surrounding Tim Howard's future at the club continue to swirl but Martinez would not be drawn to comment on them. 

Photo: ESPN FC

Injuries and fitness 

January signing Oumar Niasse may still have to wait for his chance to don the royal blue of Everton. Martinez stated that he has a wrist injury and will have an outside chance of appearing for the Blues. 

John Stones is available after suffering a hamstring injury a number of weeks ago and will give the Everton boss a selection headache in who to choose in defence. Captain Phil Jagielka and Ramiro Funes Mori have played well together but Stones gives Martinez an opportunity to rest one of them.

Muhamed Besic is still a doubt for the Blues but may not be too far away. He is still working by himself and has not rejoined first-team training as of yet.