Cahill 'desperate' for fourth

Midfielder hopes history repeats itself in European race

Cahill: Champions League desire

Loading Market ...

Football Betting

Up To £30 Free Matched Bet

Tim Cahill is hoping history repeats itself after describing Monday's 2-0 victory over Manchester City as Everton's 'best performance of the season'.

The victory at the City of Manchester Stadium allowed the Toffees to reclaim fourth spot in the Premier League and open a three-point margin over Merseyside rivals Liverpool as the race for a place in next season's UEFA Champions League gathers pace.

In 2005 Everton beat Liverpool to fourth place and Cahill, who set up Yakubu Aiyegbeni for Everton's opener against City, sees similarities between that season and the current campaign and admits he is 'desperate' for Champions League football.

"The similarities between now and then are that we have a team full of players who want to play for this football club and who will do everything they can to get into the team," Cahill told the Liverpool Echo.

Under-pressure

"Personally, I think this performance was up there with the very best we've had this season.

"We were under a lot of pressure beforehand, but we got on with it and played. The back four were absolutely tremendous.

"We aren't thinking about what anyone else is doing. Liverpool had a great result (3-2 against Middlesbrough on Saturday), but we have had one ourselves now and we are absolutely desperate to get that fourth place."

Meanwhile, Everton host European rivals Portsmouth on Sunday - a match which can be seen live on Sky Sports 1 - and Phil Neville believes the Goodison Park crowd can play a crucial role in the final games of the season.

Fantastic stage

"It's a fantastic stage of the season to be at, everyone must be excited," Neville told Everton's official website.

"The players have a massive part to play, the management has a massive part to play, but the supporters have an even bigger part to play and if they want to be with us in the trenches then they just need to keep going like they have been doing, getting behind us.

"There are going to be ups and downs, there always is towards the end of the season, but it is how you recover from those ups and downs that determines where you're going to finish."