Koeman: Everton deserve to be third

Ronald Koeman says Everton rightfully occupy third spot in the Premier League table, despite missing the chance to move into second behind league leaders Manchester City.

Everton were forced to settle for a point against in-form Crystal Palace after Romelu Lukaku’s opening goal was cancelled out by a Christian Benteke header.

A victory for the Toffees at Goodison Park would have seen them move onto the coat-tails of Man City, albeit the rest of the Premier League are yet to play this weekend.

But Koeman believes a share of the spoils was a fair outcome, as have Everton’s previous six results this season.

“Should we be higher than we are now? Please, please think about it,” said the Dutchman.

“Did you expect Everton, before the season started, to be this high?

“We didn't steal one single point this season. All the victories – and the defeat last weekend – have all been deserved.

“Overall it has been positive but we need to be better.

“Since the start of the season everything has been very positive.”

Lukaku’s 25-yard free-kick handed Everton a half-time lead, yet Palace were much-improved after the break with Benteke equalising and then Damian Delaney controversially seeing a header ruled out for offside.

Koeman added: “It's a good point. Of course you would like to win at home, even more so when you're 1-0 up, but it's very tough.

"A big compliment to the team was how we defended the second balls and set plays against a difficult team.

"But one time they took the chance and earned a draw. Finally, we got one point and it's not a bad point.”