Anichebe eyeing regular spot
Striker hoping for injury-free season next year
Last Updated: May 9, 2012 10:15am
Victor Anichebe: Is hoping an injury-free season will mean more games for Everton next season
Everton striker Victor Anichebe is hoping he can put his injury woes behind him and earn a regular place in the first team next season.
The Nigerian has once again been forced to watch a large chunk of Everton's campaign from the sidelines due to injury.
The 24-year-old picked up a groin strain on international duty last September and was ruled out for action for four months.
He made his comeback against West Brom at The Hawthorns on New Year's Day and grabbed a late winner, one of five goals in 13 appearances since the turn of the year.
Anichebe admits he is pleased with his goals tally since returning to fitness, especially as most of his appearances have been from the bench and he is often played out on the right wing.
However, the powerful forward is hoping a full pre-season and an injury-free campaign will mean a regular starting spot for David Moyes' side and the chance to play as a central striker.
"Considering the amount of appearances I've actually made it's a good [goal] return, but hopefully next year I will be playing more games and playing from the start while staying injury free," he told the Liverpool Echo.
Goals to games
"I expect more from myself. I need to apply that next year and be better. Someone was telling me about my goals to games ratio and it's nice to know but I don't want to look too much into it.
"I'd prefer to play more games and more minutes. Hopefully when I'm fitter and stronger I can do that from the start.
"I see myself as a forward. I don't know if it's a number nine or behind that, or just drifting but I've had experience of playing all these now. As long as I am helping the team I can't really complain.
"Going on I see myself as playing up front."
Heading into the final weekend of the season Everton know victory over Newcastle United at Goodison Park will seal seventh place and guarantee that they will finish above Mersey rivals Liverpool for the first time since 2005.
That would mark yet another successful post-Christmas turnaround for the Toffees, who have made a habit of starting seasons slowly in recent years.
Anichebe though is confident they can break that cycle and believes their form in recent weeks will stand them in good stead for next year.
"There's lots of optimism for next season," he added.
"The way we've finished on a good high, the players that have come in have made a big difference, and hopefully we can bring it into next season this time."