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It has happened. The long awaited return of Gerard Deulofeu was announced hours ago by all parties involved. And I can tell you, Everton fans could not be happier.
The rumours have been going on longer than neutral fans would think, every transfer window the same story. The same sources claiming that Everton’s adopted son was coming ”home” so to speak and this transfer window was no different, with this transfer dragging on for weeks on end.
But there was a difference this time, with talks of a permanent deal in the air.
I know that myself and a lot of other Everton fans dismissed the idea not understanding why Barcelona would let such a talent leave before giving him a proper chance.
And yet here we are. Weeks later and a 5 million deal for Gerard Deulofeu being agreed with a buyback clause (Barca not as stupid as you would think). Yet the buyback clause did nothing to dampen the Everton fans’ moods as just seeing this wonder kid don the Everton jersey again will be a great feeling.
But let’s take you back to why this transfer means so much to Everton fans.
The first spell
This Deulofeu-Everton love affair all started at the beginning of the 2013-14 season.
It was Roberto Martinez’s first season and he was using his sources in Spain to attract a certain Gerard Deulofeu who had dazzled at the Under-20 World Cup the summer before.
He was unknown to Everton fans, but his reputation did not sound too suited to Everton. Words like arrogant, selfish, lazy were heard when asking about this young starlet, but it would all be forgotten in a while.
Deulofeu started reasonably well, he dazzled with his dribbling ability but did not look for his team-mates enough to his chagrin of fans, players, and the manager. But the talent was there.
The longer Deulofeu played the better he would become; fast forward 5 months and the selfishness was not an issue.
Deulofeu had become the key to unlocking defences that Everton needed with vital goals vs Sunderland, Cardiff, and of course “that” late leveller vs Arsenal.
At the end of the season, when it was his time to go back to Barcelona, we were very sad to see him go.
Season at Barca
Deulofeu was sent out on loan to Sevilla who had Unai Emery, a stickler for hard work, at the helm.
For one reason or another it did not work out, Deulofeu was not given enough chances and rumours of a bust-up with Unai Emery emerged — much to the happiness of Everton fans.
And here we are, and the prodigal son has returned.
And he could not have come at a better time.
Everton’s performance last season was one of the worst I have witnessed in my life. They finished 11th and were very lucky to finish that high as a relegation battle seemed on the cards for most of the season.
There was one big thing we were lacking: a Gerard Deulofeu. That one winger who would run at defenders no matter what, that one winger who would make sure every time he came onto the pitch that he would attack and create chances, it was something Everton severely lacked last season.
The question now is: will Deulofeu walk into this Everton side? Despite how positive his performances were, Deulofeu was not a prominent figure in the Everton line-up in his first spell, usually coming on as an impact sub with half an hour to go.
But as stated above, this Everton team needs a Gerard Deulofeu so it will be interesting to see how Roberto Martinez utilises him. He can play left or right of midfield with the right being the main priority with Aaron Lennon returning to Spurs after his loan spell.
But all-in-all: it is an exciting time to be a Blue with this arrival.
Written by Jamie De Geir
Follow Jamie on Twitter @evertonianjamie
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