“In terms of the satisfaction you can get as a manager that was as good as it gets.”
Those were the words of Everton manager Roberto Martinez following his side’s 3-0 victory over Arsenal on Sunday afternoon. And while I understand his sentiment – that in terms of the Toffees’ overall performance it was close to perfection – I think the Spaniard may soon have to reassess just how good things can get for him and his team.
Everton’s latest victory leaves them just one point behind Arsenal having played a game less than the Gunners.
Should they win that, and match or better Arsenal’s results for the rest of the season, there will be two Merseyside clubs in the Champions League next season.
Of course it is still a big ask, and at this stage it remains more fairy-tale than likely outcome, but the way Martinez’s team set about the game on Sunday, the way they emphatically won a match that should have inspired nerves but instead inspired tenacity, showed just how far he has taken them in a short space of time.
It also suggested that the former Wigan and Swansea manager will be enjoying many more “as good as it gets” moments in the coming campaigns.
Martinez always suggested he had this in him. His demeanour and his footballing ethos were both admired and one wondered why he had not moved to a bigger club sooner. But he and Everton appear to be the perfect fit.
So while Sunday was his best moment since taking charge last summer, better moments are surely on the horizon.
Do you believe Everton will qualify for the Champions League this season?