Jordan Pickford says he wants to build a “legacy” at Everton after signing a new four-and-a-half year contract.
The England goalkeeper’s previous deal expired next summer but he has now committed to the club until the 2027.
If he sees through that deal it would mean Pickford will have a spent a decade with the Toffees, having joined from boyhood club Sunderland in 2017 - a rare hit in what was otherwise a disastrous transfer window that summer.
Since then he was won the club’s Player of the Season award twice, including last season when his spectacular save against Chelsea in April was one of the key moments that saved the club from relegation.
He has also established himself as England’s number one, earning 50 caps and playing at two World Cups and a European Championship.
Speaking about his new contract, Pickford said:
“It’s massive to sign this new contract at such a special club for me. The support I’ve had from everyone at the club since I joined as a 22-year-old has been so important to my family and me. I’m happy here and so are my family. We love it at Everton.
“Everton is a massive club. The past few seasons have not been what we wanted but we now have a manager who I believe will point us in the right direction and get us up the table. It’s definitely my aim to be successful at this club. The fans, the staff and my teammates have been great with me from the moment I joined and I want to be great for them.
“I just want to keep working hard and performing for Everton. We know we are in a tough place at the moment in the league but I’m eager to help the team improve this season and then aim for success in the future, which will include playing in our new stadium.
“This contract will take me to more than 10 years at Everton and I want to build a legacy here to put myself up there with the likes of Neville Southall to be one of the best keepers to have played for Everton.”
To have one of their senior players commit their future to the club is a timely boost given their recent struggles in the league.
Let’s be real though, if Everton do go down then Pickford is likely to be one of the first players moved on.
However, the reliable Paul Joyce reports that there is no relegation clause in Pickford’s contract, which could strengthen Everton’s hand in negotiation (though there may well a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ to let him go should Everton fall into the Championship).
And if Everton do avoid the drop, which we of course hope they do, then they have one of they key players tied down for their prime years.
Everton director of football, Kevin Thelwell, said:
“Jordan is one of the best goalkeepers in world football, so it is a significant boost for us to have a player of his quality and talent commit his long-term future to the club.
“He has proven to be a first-rate player for Everton and England over many years and his attitude, focus and leadership continues to be exemplary.
“Since signing him in 2017, our chairman has built a strong relationship with Jordan and his representatives, and this played a big and important part in us getting this new contract agreed. I’m sure that every Evertonian will be delighted to hear this news and excited to know that Jordan remains an integral part of our plan to move Everton forward.”