Everton defender Michael Keane believes manager Carlo Ancelotti is the key to fulfilling their top-four ambitions as he has “been there and done it all”.
A 1-0 Premier League victory over West Brom briefly lifted the Toffees into fourth before Chelsea’s win at Liverpool later on Thursday night saw them overtaken by Thomas Tuchel’s side.
However, Ancelotti’s team are only a point behind with a match in hand and three wins in six days have propelled them into contention to launch a genuine challenge.
Keane believes the experience of three-time Champions League winner Ancelotti will be key to keeping them there.
“We know it is going to be tough but we feel we have quality and we have the attitude and mentality within the team to do it,” the centre-back told evertontv.
“The manager has been there and done it all and he passes that belief onto his players.
“You can see that on nights like last night; even when we don’t play well we still believe we are going win, we can dig deep, get one chance, take it and hold on.
“That is some of the quality you need. We know it is going to be tough but there are 12 games left and there is no reason why we can’t believe.”
Victory at the Hawthorns was Everton’s ninth away from home in the league this season, a number they last achieved in 2009.
They have taken 29 points from a possible 39 on the road – compared to 17 from 39 at home – and that has been the cornerstone of their push for the top four.
“The fact we won away from home when we didn’t play well is the sign of a good team,” added Keane.
“We’ve played much better in previous weeks when we have been on this decent run and won a few games but we had to grind it out.
“They made it difficult for us, we didn’t create a lot of chances and (there was) a bit of a lack of quality for us but we got the goal and a clean sheet so we’re pleased with that.”