Everton manager Frank Lampard has told his players they cannot afford to let their standards drop having now recorded their first win of the season.
The 1-0 victory over West Ham immediately before the international break followed four successive draws and lifted the Toffees away from the bottom three.
Having only avoided relegation in their penultimate match last season, Lampard is keen to avoid being dragged into another battle.
“The reality is we’ve now set a standard which means whoever comes into the team has to deliver defensively and make us hard to beat,” he wrote in a post to fans on Everton’s website.
“If you’re hard to beat in this league, you give yourself a chance and we’ve shown that so far this season. That’s something we just cannot lose.
“We are setting standards now that we have to maintain.
“We’ve got to understand as well that we’ve got new players in and that means it takes time to get fluidity to our game.
“At the moment, though, we’re at the start of our process moving forward and the West Ham win gave us three important points, especially after we deserved more from our previous matches.”