It was on a cold wintery December afternoon at The Emirates in 2013 when a certain ‘Spanish Diamond’ announced himself to the Premier League. With Everton trailing Arsenal, Roberto Martinez unleashed his Spanish prodigy Gerard Deulofeu into the game, firing an unstoppable shot past Wojciech Szczesny and rescuing a point for the jubilant travelling Toffees.
From that point on in the 2013-2014 season the Barcelona loanee flourished under the stewardship of Martinez. Although still very raw his ability to beat a man as well as create openings for other players was a thing of beauty. Not since the halcyon days of Andrei Kanchelskis had Everton possessed a player of attacking threat as they seemed to in Deulofeu.
Evertonian’s adopted the 70’s Scottish rock band Pilot song Magic as the Deulofeu terrace anthem. ‘Oh oh oh he’s magic you know, Gerard Deulofeu’. In Evertonian’s eyes he was magic and wished he wasn’t just a loanee.
Unfortunately during last summer Barcelona wouldn’t sanction a second loan deal for the enigmatic Spaniard to return to Goodison Park, hoping the youngster, a graduate of their famous Masia youth academy would go straight into their first team set up. During this time they appointed Luis Enrique as their new Manager and as such decided his football development would be better served on loan in Spain with Sevilla.
Regrettably for Deulofeu his loan at Los Rojiblancos hasn’t worked out for player or club. Returning to Barcelona after the conclusion of the Europa League Final he appeared in only 17 La Liga games having been available for all 38 matches. Comparing that to his time on Merseyside where he appeared in 25 Premier League games.
Since the conclusion of the Premier League season Evertonian’s everywhere have been calling for the return of Gerard Deulofeu. We have all been hoping both Everton and Barcelona could come to an agreement over another season long loan deal.
Last week on social media there were unconfirmed reports that the clubs has in fact agreed another season long loan deal. Nevertheless during transfer windows I have learnt the hard way that anything on social media needs taking with a huge pinch of salt. Most rumours on there are completely unfounded and without substance.
To my surprise and absolute jubilation, today the Daily Mail reported that the Spanish Diamond looks like returning to his rightful home. Joe Bernstein reports that Everton are poised to sign Deulofeu for £3million from Barcelona after beating off competition from other Premier League clubs. £3million would represent great value for money considering his age and huge potential. I’m sure the £3 million is the down payment and the transfer fee will be appearance and bonus related with no doubt a first option buy-back clause that most Spanish clubs demand inserting when selling their youngsters.
Similar to Twitter as a rule of thumb I tend to take most newspaper articles with a pinch of salt too. The amount of players down the years we’ve been linked to only to be let down last minute isn’t worth thinking about, with Nigel Martyn and Fabrizio Ravenelli two of many nearly men to sign for Everton. However with this new link I have a really positive feeling that we will get this over the line. As of this evening EL Mundo Deportivo in Spain are reporting that discussions have taken place between the two sides but no agreement is in place as yet. The Daily Mail look like they might have had the scoop all along!
After a season that promised so much but delivered very little us Evertonian’s need a positive summer and the return of Gerard Deulofeu on loan or permanent would certainly do that.
After all, he’s magic you know!