Amadou Onana has hailed the role that Idrissa Gueye plays in Everton’s team, declaring that the 33-year-old brings “something else” to the side. Gueye has come under scrutiny following the past couple of fixtures as he twice gave away possession cheaply with his errors leading to goals for Southampton and Manchester United, writes the LiverpoolEcho.
However, Onana maintains that his veteran team-mate bring an extra dimension to the Blues’ midfield. Asked at an Everton Supporters Club live fan event at Goodison Park’s Alex Young Suite how big a role Gueye plays, the 21-year-old, said: “A big one because the manager told me about him maybe coming here, he’s a great player with a lot of experience, he’s brought something else to the team. He’s a very positive guy and a good player, so a benefit to the team.”
Onana, who was Frank Lampard’s biggest signing of the summer having joined from Lille for £33.5million, also spoke of the instant rapport he has built-up with Evertonians. He said: “This just gives me an extra motivation. I’ve never had such a warm welcome, such support, so thank you guys for just being behind us and not letting us down.”
The Belgium international was joined by fellow new boys Dwight McNeil and Neal Maupay and although the trio were all born after Everton’s last FA Cup win in 1995, the former Burnley winger admitted that the prospect of ending the longest silverware drought in the Blues’ history was part of the motivation in him making his £20million move from Turf Moor. Asked what the team could achieve this season given that it would be fantastic to be part of an Everton side that won a trophy, McNeil said: “Definitely, I think that’s why we joined, to help Everton to do a lot better than they did last season and see where it takes us. It would be nice to have a good season, finish higher in the league and do well in the cup as well.
“We know this season we’ve signed quite a few players and it’s a new team, but I think we’re going in the right direction and the only way we’re looking is up. We know we want to do well for ourselves, for the team and for the fans.”
Everton suffered their first defeat in eight games in all competitions when Manchester United secured a 2-1 comeback win at Goodison Park last Sunday but although the Blues now face a couple of tough away games over the next week at Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United, Maupay remains confident they can surprise Antonio Conte’s high-flying side in the capital this weekend. He said: “It was a tough game for us on Sunday, we didn’t play our game and credit to them, they had a good day but we’ve got to bounce back on Saturday and I think we’ve got the strength in the squad and the belief that going there, we can get a result.”