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Oct 1, 2012

Mirallas targets Champions League

Kevin Mirallas believes that Everton have every right to set their sights on Champions League qualification this season.

• Blog: Everton Stutter on

Saturday's 3-1 victory over Southampton lifted David Moyes' team to second in the Premier League, three points behind leaders Chelsea.

Everton have won four and drawn one of their opening six league matches, making a better start than last season's champions Manchester City and runners-up Manchester United.

Mirallas, 24, been good value so far for the £5.3 million Moyes paid to sign him from Olympiakos in August.

The Belgium international has made a significant impact in their two most recent victories, scoring his first league goal for the club in a 3-0 victory at Swansea before setting up two as Southampton were beaten at Goodison Park.

And the striker feels that he can help Everton maintain their impressive start to the season, even pushing for a finish in the top four.

"Before I signed, I was looking at the Europa League being a more realistic ambition," he told the Liverpool Daily Post. "But certainly now as the season has got under way, we have got a good crop of players here and are playing some really nice football.

"It's fantastic that we are second and our ambition now has to be to stay up there and put pressure on those around us. It's a long season though and there's a long way to go, so we'll have to see what happens."

Mirallas is happy with the way he has adjusted to life at Goodison Park following his move from Greece, where he won the Greek Superleague title in 2011 and 2012.

"It's going a lot better than I could have hoped for. The settling in period has been a lot shorter than I thought it was going to be," he said.

"That's because of various reasons. My team-mates are really cool with me, they have been great with me. They talk to me a lot and support me a lot. The other big factor is that I've spent a lot more time on the field and played in more games than I thought I might have done at first.

"I'm still not quite there physically. I still need a good run of games to be 100 per cent fit. I had a chat with the manager when I first came here and he was fully aware that I hadn't a full pre-season because I'd had a problem with my knee. I'm trying to catch up on that by playing games."

Despite being aware of Mirallas' qualities, Moyes has admitted to being surprised at the way his signing has settled in so quickly.

"I actually thought it would take longer for him to settle and for us to get used to him," Moyes said. "We got a bit of a tip off about him. We were told how good he was and we thought he could do well over here but we are not getting carried away.

"He played a lot from the left at Olympiacos, he can play as a striker and he can play on the right. That was probably the position he has been least used in. I wanted to add some goals and I do actually think when he plays through the middle he will score more goals. He is doing a good job for us where he is just now."

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