Ronald Koeman was probably the happiest and most relieved man on Merseyside Friday afternoon as he watched Gylfi Sigurdsson sitting next to him answering questions from the media during the player’s first press conference as an Everton signing.
“Of course very pleased. Sometimes you have to be more patient than you’d like for something that’s good.
“From the start of last season he has been on my list. He was one of the key players to bring in at Everton. I’m really please and happy that we have an agreement and he has signed on to be at Everton.
“His role will be in one of the offensive positions.He can play as an offensive midfelder behind the striker or in a free role like he did most of the season at Swansea.
“I’ve spoken a lot about productivity and what we need to find to replace a top scorer last season. We tried to bring in players who will give productivity to the team and he is one of those players because of his record, his goals and his assists. He’s a really important player for set plays, that’s what we need and we are confident that he will make the team stronger in that area.”
When asked if Sigurdsson would play this week with the Blues having three games, Koeman added -
“He will train tomorrow and will do tests. I’m not worried about his fitness. Of course, as a player you need game-time and need to play games in pre-season to get to 100 per cent. But his fitness is okay and he is a good professional.
“He will get time next week. We have a tough week coming up and he will be part of all the games next week.”
Press conference with Gylfi Sigurdsson and Ronald Koeman!Dikirim oleh Everton Football Club pada 18 Agustus 2017
Next up was Sigurdsson, who expressed relief that the long-drawn transfer saga was finally over -
“Everton is a big club, an old club in England with a good history. It (playing for Everton) is definitely something I have always wanted to achieve in my career.”
When asked about his experiences about trialing with the Blues when he was 12 years old -
“I was a ball boy for one of the games and being that close to the pitch was incredible. It gave me the feeling this is what you want to do when you’re older. I’m really pleased and happy to finally be here.”
Koeman said he would feature this week, but he felt he was not quite ready to play a full game -
“Maybe not 90 minutes, as you normally start with 45 in pre-season and then increase it. I’ve been training well over the last five or six weeks since I came back off holiday in early July.
“I’ve been training really well but I just need a few more minutes under my belt before I play 90 minutes.”
What attracted Sigurdsson to playing at Everton -
“It’s always been a tough club to play against, so I’m looking forward to not playing Everton this season.
“The manager has really good experience as a player and a coach. He is making the squad bigger and stronger, so it is a club on the rise.
“I want to play well for the club. The club has high ambitions. Over the last couple of years the club has been building the squad. Hopefully we can continue the good start we have had to the season and really build on it.”
As far as his personal aspirations -
“I put pressure on myself to play well for the team and to create and score goals for the Club. That is all I need and all I am focused on.
“As a player you always want to improve. That is something you try to do every day and every season, so hopefully that will continue."
Was he excited about playing against Wayne Rooney?
“Of course, yes. He’s been a fantastic player, both for Everton and Manchester United, and for the national team.
“I don’t think he gets the credit he deserves fully. Of course everyone knows he’s a fantastic player.
“He’s one of the players I really look forward to playing with, amongst a lot of other players here.”