Marco Silva secured a coup for the club in the summer transfer window as Andre Gomes arrived at Goodison Park from Barcelona in a season-long loan deal, but injury problems have forced the Toffees faithful to bide their time before watching him in action.
Gomes’ long-awaited debut finally arrived against Crystal Palace on Sunday afternoon as he was handed a starting berth in central midfield alongside Idrissa Gueye.
A finely balanced partnership which saw Gueye providing the brawn and Gomes providing the brains in midfield, the Portugal international impressed without setting the world alight on his debut.
Neat touches and strong hints of classy ball-playing quality characterised his performance and hinted that he could become a key player under Silva this season.
Following his debut performance, Marco Silva spoke to Everton TV (via Goal) and suggested that the summer recruit could add a new dimension to the Toffees attacking play in the final-third .
“He has quality on the ball and understands the game. He is enjoying playing for us and training every day.
“I know he will improve… he has to improve his physical condition and get to know his team-mates better.
“It is a case now of looking forward with him and the other players in that position. We have to improve our build-up and play a little bit faster and Andre will help us with that.”
Whilst Everton have shown glimpses of intensity in their attacking play, particularly when Gylfi Sigurdsson has been at his scintillating best, they have lacked a cutting edge at times which Gomes is well placed to provide.
A natural ball-playing midfielder by trade, Gomes has the ability to inject a level of craft and guile into Everton’s transition from midfield to attack, and Silva’s latest admission suggests that he has every faith in him to do just that.
Time will tell whether Gomes can blossom into the excellent talent he was widely tipped to become when he earned a switch to the Catalan giants in 2016 but, under a manager of Silva’s expertise and within a club of Everton’s standing, he has an excellent opportunity to silence his doubters in Spain.
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