Everton defender Phil Jagielka has expressed his desire to remain at Goodison Park next season and is determined to prove to manager Ronald Koeman that he is worth keeping at the club during pre-season. Jagielka, 34, has had to contend with a watching brief for a substantial part of the current campaign under Koeman, who dropped him after a string of poor performances.
The England international managed to fight his way back into the first-team reckoning and has delivered a number of impressive displays in recent months, but despite his upturn in form he is unsure if the former Southampton manager will keep him at Everton for next season. Jagielka joined the Toffees in the summer of 2007, and does not want his stay on Merseyside to end just yet.
"It's not really about me and what I hope," the Everton captain told Sky Sports. "I'll get the time off like the rest of the lads, prepare myself to go back for pre-season and see where the land lies.
"I am delighted to be here – I have been here a long time now. I have got at least one more year on my contract and feel as though I have got a lot more football left in me. It is up to me to come back in pre-season and prove to the manager that I am not too bad and hopefully I can stick around."
Jagielka was heavily linked with leaving Everton in the January transfer window and has been rumoured with moves to Sunderland, former club Sheffield United and MLS. Jagielka said he finds speculation over his future 'amusing', and is fully focused on prolonging his stay with Everton.
"It's amusing," Jagielka added. "It's the way football is, if it's a slow story day people will just chuck stuff out. You never can say never but I'm looking forward to finishing the season well, having a break, coming back all guns blazing and trying to keep my place in the team."