Heitinga targets Europe

Defender confident in team's ability and looks forward to QPR clash

Last Updated: 15/08/11 4:56pm

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Everton defender John Heitinga has underlined his team's objective for the 2011-12 season by stating their determination to play in Europe.

The Blues did not feature in the Premier League at the weekend after their game with Spurs was postponed in the wake of the London riots and will start their campaign against Queens Park Rangers on Saturday.

Heitinga admits that Everton do not have biggest of squads in the top flight but is confident that they are good enough to finish in a Europa League position.

"In the last couple of months of last season we played quite well and picked up a lot of points," he told the club's official website.

"But in my eyes Everton should at least play in the Europa League and we will do everything we can to get there.

"The start needs to be better because last season we had almost no points after 10 games and we need to play better."

Beating QPR

Looking ahead to their clash against QPR, Heitinga stated: "It is up to us now as it is our first game and they are new in the league and we need to beat them and make sure we have a better start than last season.

"We have a good team and a strong squad. Not the biggest squad, but if everyone is fit then we have good competition between us to see who is going to play. We are all excited about the new season."

Heitinga, 27, is also happy with his pre-season preparations as this summer he did not have commitment for his country the Netherlands like he had in 2010.

"This year I am feeling good," he enthused. "It is the first time for a while I have had a longer pre-season - especially after last year with the World Cup - and I am feeling fit and looking forward to it.

"Hopefully it will be a good season for us and hopefully we can show the fans that we will fight for every point."

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