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Andros Townsend on representing Everton, what can develop this year, and his reunion with Rafa Benitez

The new right winger made a decent impression in his first appearance during the Florida Cup

Everton v Millionarios: Florida Cup
Andros Townsend during the Everton v Millionarios match
Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

After the win against Millonarios in the pre-season Florida Cup in Orlando, Florida, Everton’s new right wing option from Crystal Palace, Andros Townsend, sat down with evertontv and discussed his debut performance.

While his play was impressive, and both he and fellow new signing Demarai Gray appeared to offer a bit of explosiveness lacking from the team last year, the 30-year-old Townsend earnestly believes that more time with Rafa Benitez will improve him and his teammates even further.

Regarding the match and playing in the United States, the new Toffee was quite happy to have shown the American supporters a good showing and result.

“I really enjoyed the game, and it was nice to be out there playing in front of the American fans. They won’t have been able to see Everton play live for a few years, so it was nice to give back to them and to win the game, which is the most important thing...”

Regarding his own performance Andros Townsend remained humble, yet was effusive regarding the skill and intellect of his new teammates, as well as his commitment to the Everton badge on the front of his shirt.

“...I put a couple of nice crosses into the box and I almost scored as well. I had the exact same type of shots in training a few days ago and I hit them both in the top corner, but this one hit the crossbar. I’m very fortunate playing with world-class players, they’re getting me into good positions, and hopefully I can just hit one a little bit lower next time and open my account for this famous club...”

He would elaborate further, while mentioning boss Rafa Benitez and his own impact on Townsend’s career thus far.

“I need to keep improving. I know the manager well and I’m sure he’ll go through the tape of the game with me and show me my good parts and – more importantly – my bad parts, so I can improve and help this club in any way possible When I speak to him, he’ll be telling me what I could have done better and the positions he wants me to pick up. He wants to keep improving players and that’s why I had such a great spell with him at Newcastle. Hopefully, I can have similar success here.”

While the naturally left footed Andros Townsend showed that he could be a definite threat from out wide to score goals this season, he knows quite well for what purpose he was brought in to help this club moving forward.

“I’ve had to work over the years to improve my weaker side; it’s got to the point now where I actually prefer crossing with my right....I was brought to this club to put crosses in the box. We’ve got a big number nine in Dominic [Calvert-Lewin] – or it could be Moise [Kean] or whoever is playing in that position – and my job is to put the ball in the box. I did that on a couple of occasions against Millonarios and hopefully, the more the communication grows with my teammates, they’ll know where I’m going to cross the ball, and we can get some joy from it this season...”

Finally, the veteran of notable English clubs Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle United and Crystal Palace, Townsend demonstrated wonderful grace and team spirit in regards to what he believes he can bring to Everton, while intimating that he has enjoyed the process of getting to know his teammates better.

“I grew into that role at Crystal Palace, helping the youngsters and helping the team..I’m come to Everton and I feel like there’s a role like that for me here as well. Seamus [Coleman] has been great with me, he’s been a leader, and I want to be a similar leader. I’ve just turned 30, and I’ve got Premier League games under my belt. I want to help the boys, whether it be with my feet, with my voice, or in the dressing room. I’m enjoying every minute of being here, as you can see with the smile on my face. It’s a lot easier [to settle in] when you’re away with the group and you’re interacting 24/7. I’ve got to know the boys a lot more quickly than I normally would have.”

With a positive debut in a positive team victory in Florida, Everton faithful can know full well that with the acquisition of Andros Townsend, the Toffees got a very serviceable and intellectual player on a free transfer. He is a player who wishes to be on Merseyside with the team, and who wishes to make an impact in any capacity is he able to.