This season for Everton was supposed to be a migration towards the next step, moving closer to the top four where they could attempt to brush shoulders with the top clubs of the Premier League.
With an animated summer transfer activity, it was supposed to strengthen their aforementioned intentions. Instead, Everton find themselves without a manager, and in close proximity with the putrid air emitted from the relegation zone.
The Merseyside club find themselves 16th in the table, yet Everton's Idrissa Gueye, has not lost hope that his side can climb out of their current situation.
Gueye has looked towards his side's visit to Southampton on Sunday with much anticipation, circling the game as a must-win.
Everton's recent uplifting form in their last two league wins was derailed by a 5-1 drumming at home in the Europa League, though the Senegalese midfielder does not think the defeat to Atalanta has dented his side's recent turning of the corner.
Southampton have lost their last two games, and despite sitting one point ahead, Gueye is calling for his side to prey on the Saints' recent bad form. Gueye opened up to the club website about Everton's overall performance so far this season.
He said: “We have one win at home (against Watford) and a draw at Crystal Palace. Thursday was bad for everybody but we have to keep our heads up and try to give our best against Southampton. That is important for our confidence, for our club, via Everton FC.
“You have difficult times but I think we all talk to each other. We all try to do our best to get out of this difficult moment. “But this is football and sometimes you need experienced players to talk to the young players. We need to be a team and to work hard for each other.”
Gueye has called upon himself, as well as his team to change the club's fortunes. But the Senegalese has also enlisted the help of the Evertonian fans as an important pillar of support.
He said, “We need them at this time.
“It is not just when everything is going well that they are there – they are there when things are going wrong. We need them to push us to get out of this difficult time.
“We are not a team who should be playing at the bottom of the table. We are a big team and we have to believe we can start winning games.”