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Following the signing of Paraguay international Antolin Alcaraz on a free transfer earlier this month, Alex Sutch takes a look at the five other South Americans to have represented Everton…
Rodrigo, 4 appearances, 0 goals
The first South American to don the royal blue jersey was Brazilian attacking midfielder Rodrigo. Signed on loan from Botafogo in July 2002, he made his debut in the opening game of the Premier League season at home to Tottenham Hotspur - the same game in which Wayne Rooney made his competitive bow for the Blues. Expected to bring the flair and creativity typically associated with a star of the samba nation, he would record only three further appearances for the Toffees before breaking down in training with a cruciate ligament injury in September 2002. The Club decided against following up an option to sign him on a permanent basis the following summer.
Anderson Silva de Franca, 1 appearance, 0 goals
The next South American to play for Everton was Anderson Silva de Franca, who initially agreed a switch from Uruguayan outfit Nacional in the summer of 2005. Immigration issues prevented the Brazilian from joining the Club immediately and he was loaned out to Spanish side Malaga before officially signing on with the Toffees on a short-term deal in January 2007. He was awarded a new one-year deal at the end of the 2007/08 season but found first-team opportunities scarce and moved to Barnsley in January 2008 following two successful loan spells with the Tykes. Ultimately, De Silva played just one game for Everton, with his solitary appearance coming against Charlton Athletic at Goodison Park in April 2007 - a game best remembered for James McFadden’s sensational injury-time winner. De Silva now plays for lower-league Brazilian outfit Pelotas.
Segundo Castillo, 14 appearances, 1 goal
The first and only Ecuadorian to play for Everton signed on a season-long loan in August 2008. Segundo Castillo joined the Blues from Red Star Belgrade and will be best remembered for his thunderbolt UEFA Cup strike against Standard Liege at Goodison Park the following month. After failing to secure a permanent transfer to Merseyside, the subsequent season he found himself on loan with another English club, Wolverhampton Wanderers. He now plies his trade at Al-Hilal in the Saudi Premier League.
Jo, 36 appearances, 7 goals
Jo became the fourth South American, and the third Brazilian, to represent the Blues. Despite signing for Manchester City for a fee of £18m, the beanpole forward found chances hard to come by at the Etihad Stadium and moved to Goodison Park on loan in January 2009. He scored two goals on his debut in a 3-0 win over Bolton Wanderers and went on to end the season with five goals in 12 games, which led to a further loan deal subsequently being agreed. Jo found his second spell at Goodison a tougher experience and he was disciplined by the Club for returning to his native Brazil without permission. His loan deal was later cut short and he returned to City in January 2010, before instantly switching to Turkish giants Galatasaray in another loan arrangement. Now back in Brazil with Atletico Minerio, Jo scored his first international goal in Brazil’s 3-0 Confederations Cup win over Japan in June. He ended the tournament with two goals to his name after also netting in his nation’s 2-0 victory against Mexico.
Denis Stracqualursi, 28 appearances, 3 goals
The only Argentinian to feature for Everton was striker Denis Stracqualursi and he became the Blues’ fifth South American player when he joined on loan from Tigre on deadline day in August 2011. Renowned for his rough and tumble style, Stracqualursi became something of a cult hero among the Goodison Park faithful following a raft of whole-hearted, all-action displays. However, despite his status as a fans' favourite, the forward had to wait until January 2012 for his first Everton goal when he headed home against Fulham in an FA Cup tie at Goodison Park. He then netted against Chelsea in a 2-0 victory the following month and again a week later when Blackpool visited Goodison, again in the FA Cup. His efforts later saw him named the Club’s Player of the Month. Following the conclusion of his loan spell, Stracqualursi joined Argentinian Primera Division side San Lorenzo on a free transfer in July 2012 and went on to score eight goals in 31 appearances in his first season for the club.
Paraguayan international Antolin Alcaraz joined Everton on a two-year-deal earlier this month after his contract with Wigan Athletic expired. The central defender followed manager Roberto Martinez from the DW Stadium to become the Spaniard’s second signing since his installation as Everton boss. As Latics chief, Martinez signed Alcaraz from Club Brugge after his impressive performances at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The 30-year-old was a part of the Paraguay side which reached the quarter-finals of the competition where they were defeated 1-0 by eventual tournament winners Spain. Antolin scored for Paraguay in their 1-1 draw with Italy in the group stages. He has 24 caps.
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