Gomez targets Champions League with Fiorentina

The Germany striker has urged his Viola team-mates to improve on their fourth-placed finish in Serie A last season, insisting it is a realistic goal

Mario Gomez believes that a top-three finish in Serie A is "not only a dream" for Fiorentina as he looks to help his team to Champions League qualification.

The 29-year-old forward endured an injury-ravaged campaign last term after suffering a series of knee problems and missed out on Germany's World Cup-winning exploits in Brazil.

Gomez saw the Viola finish fourth in the league last season and reach the Coppa Italia final but is adamant that his side can do better as he continues his pre-season preparations.

"We can improve on fourth," the former Bayern Munich man told a press conference.

"Third place is not only a dream, but a possibility. In order to achieve it, we need all the players in great shape.

"I am happy with how pre-season training is going. I've had a long time to recover my form, doing many sports. I feel good and the injury is behind me now. I’m doing everything to be in top condition for the start of the season.

"Last year I gave my all, even if I didn't play very much. This term I want to play regularly and give back to Fiorentina.

"This club signed me and renewed the contracts of Borja Valero and Gonzalo Rodriguez because it wants to grow. Hopefully we won't have so many injury problems this year."

The forward, who has 59 international caps to his name, congratulated his Germany colleagues after the World Cup but admitted he was disappointed not to have been a part of the success.

"I am happy for them, though obviously it was a pity not to be there after such a long run," he said.

"Who knows, maybe in future there could be room for me too.

"Germany won the World Cup because they were a team. Everyone gave their best regardless of who started. It was a united squad and nobody thought they were above the others. This is what counts in football."