This article forms part of our Profit Players feature series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at how well a player has fared since being signed or sold, using statistical figures and statements from pundits to prove how good of a deal the club managed to achieve.
Everton’s relationship with Seamus Coleman was one which began in January 2009, when the Toffees splashed out £150,000 (extratime.ie) to snap up a then 20-year-old right-back from Sligo Rovers ahead of competition for his signature from Celtic, Birmingham City and Ipswich Town.
David Moyes would hand Coleman his Premier League debut 297 days later as a late substitute for Johnny Heitinga against Bolton Wanderers, and 3,628 days on, Coleman remains a key man at Goodison Park, making his fee a bargain even when the Blues’ defence is not at its best.
Making his 296th outing for Everton across all competitions on Saturday against Manchester City (TransferMarkt), Coleman was one of few Toffees men to stand out for the right reasons as Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions picked their way through a faltering Blues defence.
Michael Keane was caught out of position for Gabriel Jesus’ opener by playing the Brazilian onside, while Lucas Digne – Everton’s 2018/19 Player of the Year – was run ragged by Riyad Mahrez and was fortunate not to have seen referee Michael Oliver point to the spot for a collision with Kevin de Bruyne in the second-half.
Coleman, meanwhile, was not without fault but showed why he is still the man Marco Silva names at right-back, by rolling back the years to assist Dominic Calvert-Lewin with a marauding adventure down the right-hand side – a goal which would have been his without the former England under-21 international poaching on the line with a diving header.
It has been a while since Coleman last showed himself as the creative, overlapping full-back that dazzled under Roberto Martinez on the opposing flank to Leighton Baines, and left many in awe when he outfoxed Santi Cazorla to delight the Goodison Park faithful as Everton beat Arsenal 3-0 in April 2014.
Injuries have been a regular plight of the Republic of Ireland captain’s career since then, with the 2017/18 campaign particularly short-lived with just 12 outings to his name across all competitions after fracturing his leg.
Saturday showed what Coleman is all about when on song, though, as he saw the weaknesses of a Fernandinho/Nicolas Otamendi centre-back partnership with Oleksandr Zinchenko at full-back to attack title-chasing Manchester City, and ended the day with more successful dribbles to his name than any other player on the pitch. (WhoScored)
Mahrez and Rodri led the Citizens’ charge for dribbles with two each – the same number as Gylfi Sigurdsson and Fabian Delph – but neither were a match for Coleman, who recorded eight successful dribbles from 10 vaunts down the wing, according to WhoScored data.
The 30-year-old, who has started 16 of the last 18 Premier League fixtures on offer to him, also boasted the most touches (66) of any Everton player against City on Saturday, and the second-most successful tackles (three) – the most on the Blues’ right-hand side, with Theo Walcott and Alex Iwobi both recording none.
Coleman’s career may be winding down more so than it is gearing up, but the experienced defender still has years left in him, and is now worth substantially more than the fee Everton paid a decade ago with TransferMarkt touting the Republic of Ireland leader at £13.5million – a 900% mark-up.
Everton fans, how much longer do you envisage Coleman as your starting right-back? Let us know in the comments below…Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more Everton notifications!
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