Kevin Mirallas admits that a decent performance at Goodison Park on Thursday is required to keep Everton’s European campaign alive.
Dynamo Kiev’s visit to Merseyside is imminent, with a place in the Europa League quarter-finals at stake. The Belgian international is targeting a strong victory to help ease the pressure on the second leg, when the Toffees travel to Ukraine next week.
The forward has notched up three goals and a solitary assist in four European appearances this season, helping the Premier League outfit top their respective group and convincingly advance past BSC Young Boys in the Round of 32.
Their opposition have only secured four wins in their 22 previous encounters with English sides, and are yet to win in the country. Serhiy Rebrov’s team, however, managed to overturn a first leg defeat against Guingamp at the NSC Olimpiyskiy; with Teodorczyk, Buyalskiy and Gusev all on the scoresheet.
Mirallas alluded to their quality on the pitch in a recent interview with EvertonTV and stated that a two goal victory at home will make it easier to progress.
“It is very exciting because only the best teams are left in the competition now. Dynamo Kyiv have good players but we play at Goodison first and that is good for the team.” Said the 27-year-old.
“I watched the game against Guingamp and I know they have two or three very good players. The away game will be difficult because of the stadium and the atmosphere but the first game is at Goodison and that is the most important. If we can win 2-0 it will be good.
“If you can win two or three-nil in the first leg, it makes it easier when you go away."
The former Saint-Etienne man also discussed the vocal support the Blues have been receiving in this year's competition.
“I think it is amazing,” he smiled. “When you play at home and away, the stadiums are always full of Everton fans. In Wolfsburg, Lille, Krasnodar and Bern the fans came and it was great for the team. It can be difficult when you play away but with the number of Everton fans there, it makes it better for the team.
“The fans are always behind the team. You know when you don’t play well it can be difficult but the fans are always behind us. All this season the fans have been behind us and now the most important thing is that the team win this game.”
Roberto Martinez’s men have a league game with Newcastle sandwiched between the two fixtures.