Martinez: I’ve earned a second chance

Under-fire Everton manager Roberto Martinez believes his work with the Toffees in the past will earn him a stay of execution, amid rumours of his imminent sacking.

In the wake of their elimination from the FA Cup by Manchester United in the semi-finals at Wembley on Saturday, adding to their disappointing 2015/16 Premier League campaign, Martinez's position at Goodison Park has been the subject of widespread media speculation.

The 42-year-old took over from David Moyes in August 2013 and guided Everton to fifth spot in his first season at the club, but has struggled since then, finishing 11th in the league standings last season. They currently find themselves in an identical position and out of the running for a Europa League spot, leading to suggestions Martinez could be shown ther exit at Goodison Park in the not-too-distant future.

However, while the Spaniard admits his side has performed below expectations this term, he is confident they are close to turning the corner.

"We are a big club. You don't expect it any other way," Martinez said following his side's FA Cup elimination at the hands of Manchester United.

"If I had been given ten years to work with Everton by being mediocre I would not accept that. We are a big club with big expectations and we have not won silverware for 21 years.

"I just want to believe, with the work I have done for the last three years, there are signs there that we are getting close to challenging for silverware, and where Everton should be.

"We developed young players, gave them big roles, and they reacted and showed character, flair and drive in the biggest football arena.

"In the first season we had the record number of points in the Premier League and in the second the experience of Europe. We gave young players big roles and have not invested money but managed assets.

"We were very unfairly stopped from being in the League Cup final and that never stopped us wanting to come to Wembley.

"There are signs in the three years I could have earned the opportunity to drive the club forward and I am sure we can fulfil our expectations and fulfil the dreams of every Evertonian. I am very much attached to it."