Alex Iwobi: The Signing That Will Provide Some Much Needed Balance to Evertons Attack

Ok so let's just get this out of the way: ​he's no Wilfried Zaha. Everton's ambitious pursuit of the Ivory Coast international ended in disappointment after Crystal Palace refused to budge on their £80m valuation, ensuring that the forward will remain at Selhurt Park for at least another six months.

Zaha is arguably the best player outside of the Premier League's top six, a one-man army for Palace tasked with moving the ball into the final third, creating chances, beating opponents one-on-one and scoring goals. 


Alex Iwobi is not that type of player. He's not a one-man army who can do it all. In fact, he's a player regularly that's been regularly taunted for his lack of end product

Iwobi has just 11 Premier League goals to his name, less than what Gylfi Sigurdsson and ​Richarlison achieved individually just last season. It is the same number that fellow new signing Moise Kean achieved in Serie A at just 19, with very limited minutes under his belt. 

However, ​Everton don't require another player do absolutely everything, or even a player whose focus is to score goals. Kean is prolific for a teenager and should improve even further with experience, while Richarlison is a forward playing wide rather than a natural winger, whose game is to attack space, get on the end of chances and finish well.

Alex Iwobi

Even Sigurdsson, considered a creative player by many, is more of a second striker, arriving late into the box to consistently score double figures. His impressive assist numbers come mainly through set pieces rather than cute and clever work in open play.

Iwobi, therefore, can add balance to this Everton side hoping to challenge the top six this season. Taking Bernard's role in the team, who has been pretty inconsistent since his arrival, Iwobi should be tasked with feeding the ball into the final third players, improving the link between the midfield and the attackers. 

A naturally more gifted dribbler than the others, Iwobi can carry the ball up the pitch effectively, as shown by his 3.4 progressive runs per game last season, a statistic involving moving the ball forward by ten or more metres. 

In comparison, ​Paul Pogba achieved 1.63 and Tanguy Ndombele completed 1.67, two fantastic ball-carriers who were outshone by the Nigerian in this particular regard. 

Alex Iwobi,Marc Albrighton

Closer to the opponents goal, Iwobi is perhaps more creative than his assist numbers suggest, providing ten 'big chances' for his ​Arsenal teammates last season, ranking him in the top 20 within the Premier League despite being in and out of Unai Emery's side.

Furthermore, the 23-year-old registered 0.35 expected assists per 90 last season, equalling ​Eden Hazard and bettering ​Tottenham's playmaker ​Christian Eriksen, who managed 0.26, suggesting that Iwobi is very much capable of supplying Everton's front line. 

Supported by ​Barcelona recruits Lucas Digne and ​Andre Gomes, Everton's left side has been well recruited over the past two seasons. If Jean-Philippe Gbamin can adequately replace the departed Idrissa Gueye - a tough task - and Yerry Mina can reproduce his form from the 2018 World Cup, Everton are looking an improved outfit heading into the season. 

Alex Iwobi

Physically strong with good ball control, combined with a high work-ethic, Iwobi - at a good age, also - has everything in place to be a success at Everton - it's now just down to him to prove he can do it.

Source : 90min