Ronald Koeman: Saying Everton need top-four finish is 'ridiculous'
Everton manager Ronald Koeman has said suggestions his side should finish in the Premier League's top four are "ridiculous."
Last Sunday, Koeman called for realism after Manchester United counterpart Jose Mourinho said Everton, having spent over £140 million n the summer, "wants to at least secure a top-four position this season."
Koeman, whose side are 18th in the table, added that the sort of position he regarded as realistic was "the same as last season," when Everton came seventh.
Speaking ahead to Saturday's home clash with Bournemouth, he told a news conference: "I know what we are and I know the way to be successful.
"It's crazy to put a lot of pressure on the team by saying we need to finish in the top four. In my opinion, that's ridiculous.
"Everybody has signed new players. We signed some young players, and [on Wednesday in the Carabao Cup win over Sunderland] we played with six or seven boys of 19, 20, 21, 22.
"That is the future, it needs time, and that is normal. Let's make the next step.
"It doesn't mean we don't have ambition, but I'm realistic -- and in football, being realistic is sometimes difficult."
After six games without a win, Wednesday's victory over Sunderland -- the first of four matches in a row for Everton at Goodison -- came as a relief, and Koeman said. "Let's hope it will be a positive turning point, what we need.
"Now Saturday is really important. Now we need to show we are still strong, and I'm confident after what I saw."