Roy Hodgson has secured Premier League safety for Crystal Palace for the second season running and today spoke in his press conference about how confirmed survival has affected his squad as they head into their final three matches.
The manager explained that both he and his side are pleased to have ensured top-flight football for next season, but that due to high levels of motivation, they are still focussed and energised for the forthcoming clashes.
Hodgson said: "I am happy with it but you know I think there have been periods in the season where we've had a long look over our shoulders. So to finish safe in the league as we have done with so many games to spare is in itself something we're proud of.
"We're looking forward to the last three games of the season and obviously the knife has been taken from our throat, Everton are in the same boat so it should lead to a game where both teams have the courage and confidence to go out and play. Everton like ourselves will be looking to push up the table."
And when asked about how a squad who have guaranteed safety maintain their drive for fixtures which offer little in the way of rewards, Hodgson explained that his squad are motivated enough to not cause him any concerns.
"I don't think I will have a problem with motivation because of who they are," he said, before praising his Crystal Palace side. "The group we have is a very good group, a very serious group that takes its footbal seriously and is used really to needing to fight and be at their best in every game.
"We don't have the characters that would show that complacency that would lead to some knocking off in what we're doing. The games will prove me right or wrong but I don't fear it."
The Eagles will be looking to build on their remarkable 3-2 win over Arsenal facing Everton tomorrow, and you can listen to the clash in full by buying your Palace Audio pass here.