Gylfi Sigurðsson’s Move To Everton Is Expensive But Perfect For All Parties

Gylfi Sigurðsson’s Move To Everton Is Expensive But Perfect For All Parties
Aug 21, 2017

Everton Featured

A mouth-watering £45 million pounds took 27-year-old Gylfi Sigurðsson to Goodison Park on Wednesday. What many don’t realise, though, is that Everton have secured an equally mouth-watering footballer who is perfectly suited to carrying them to the next level in his prime.

Losing talisman Romelu Lukaku, Everton spent his fee on strengthening various areas of the squad, splashing the cash on excellent young Premier League players in Jordan Pickford and Michael Keane, as well as two European talents and potential bargains in Davy Klaassen and Sandro Ramírez.

Lukaku’s money was spent on adding depth and quality to Everton’s squad as Ronald Koeman continues to relish the challenge of surmounting the seemingly insurmountable gap between Everton and the Premier League’s six finest clubs. However, even with four excellent captures and the free transfers of Wayne Rooney and Cuco Martina, Everton’s significantly improved squad still didn’t look the same side as they were with the big Belgian.

But Sigurðsson has everything needed to be an even better talisman for Everton than Lukaku. His time at Swansea and trade for Iceland have shown his versatility, work-rate, goal-creating ability, and identity, all assets that promise to make him one of the best players in the Premier League at an improved club.

One of the most underrated attributes in his football is his versatility, which makes him one of the most multifaceted attacking threats in the Premier League. Normally plying his trade as a traditional attacking midfielder, Sigurdsson’s well-rounded skill-set has allowed him to play in various other positions for Swansea and Iceland.

Known for his crossing ability, the Icelandic midfielder featured aplenty on the left-wing for Swansea. This same tactical ability could be used in a trio featuring Sandro and Wayne Rooney, with Sigurdsson and Sandro moving inside from both wings to change the formation from a 4-3-3 to a 4-4-2 diamond in a mirrored fashion to Isco and Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid.

Humble as he is technically gifted, Sigurðsson’s work-rate has allowed him to play in central midfield in Iceland’s 4-4-2 formation, forming an excellent partnership with hard-man Aron Gunnarsson in the process. At Euro 2016, the ex-Swansea player averaged 3.2 tackles, 2.2 interceptions, and 2 clearances per 90 minutes to achieve a combined 7.4 defensive actions. For context, that exceeds the 7.2 for which Chelsea’s N’Golo Kanté was heralded last season.

Since moving to Swansea, Sigurðsson has registered 27 goals and 26 assists in three Premier League seasons from various roles in attacking midfield. Last season, when he shone most, he was directly involved in 49% of Swansea’s 45 goals in the Premier League. Contributing to the same degree at Everton last season, he would have been directly involved in 30 goals as opposed to his already impressive 22.

Humility, work-rate, and goal-scoring ability only scrape the surface of the reasons why Everton’s new signing could be the perfect talisman. Auditioning at Swansea and Iceland, he succeeded with flying colours, carrying the former out of the relegation zone and the latter to a surprise Euro quarterfinal appearance.

Being an example for footballers is in Sigurdsson’s blood. From the age of six, he dedicated his life to football. As a teenager, he sacrificed summer job opportunities to play football, and spent cold Icelandic winters in a warehouse, filming himself practising his technique for hours before watching himself and making adjustments.

He could have easily moved to a bigger club and walked into their Starting XI, but he instead chose again to be the talisman, to pick a side that fits his identity. Spending his youth days as a central defender because he was deemed too slow to play further forward, he has since become one of the best-attacking midfielders in the Premier League.

This Everton move was coming for Sigurðsson from six to twenty-six. Entering the prime of his career, he remains one of the most underrated players in football, but his versatility, work-rate, goal-creating ability, and identity will ensure that he becomes the best talisman Everton have had in a very long time.

Whether he plays in central midfield, attacking midfield, or from the wing, Sigurðsson’s well-rounded, creative attributes will be matched by his underrated ability to contribute to teams defensively. However, he will always be most effective in front of goal, where he produced a combined 53 goals and assists for Swansea in three seasons, a tally which should easily rise at a better club.

Most importantly, though, Everton needed a talisman to replace Lukaku and Sigurðsson has proved for years that he is the solution, humbly sacrificing his life for a chance to play football and carrying Swansea and Iceland through tough situations. Sometimes, it takes a marquee fee to sign a marquee footballer. Sigurðsson is as prepared for the challenge as anyone has ever been.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.