David Moyes has heaped praise on Phil Jagielka, saying it’s great news that Evertonians can look forward to watching the England international play in the Blue shirt for the next four-and-a-half years.
Just days after fellow defender Seamus Coleman signed a long-term deal, it was confirmed this week that Jagielka is to extend his stay at Everton until the summer of 2017.
The Club’s vice-captain moved to Merseyside from Sheffield United in July 2007 and has since amassed just short of 200 appearances for the Blues.
“No-one can take away what Everton represents in football in this country and so Phil Jagielka has signed for a really good club,” said Moyes. “He is a top player and we are delighted to have him.
“Hopefully he will continue to be at the heart of what we do at Everton Football Club for a long time to come.
“He has been excellent since he came here and worked his way into the England squad as well, which is really important for him and us. He deserves it because he has been very good.
“It took him a while to get into the team and it was the same with Leighton Baines. But with the right work and dedication to push and keep getting better, they have both turned out to be great signings.”
Another player who Moyes believes can also get better is Victor Anichebe.
The 24-year-old striker has been in fine form since returning from injury, scoring his fifth goal of the season in the 2-1 win at Newcastle in midweek.
“I’ve always thought that Victor has got the ability and attributes to become a really good player,” added the Blues boss.
“I have said before that he needs a little bit of self-confidence as well. He needs to continue to work hard in the games and I think that is noticeable - people are talking about him and chanting his name because they can see his effort.
“He will get his rewards because, as I said, he has got those attributes and can play two or three positions. Hopefully he continues to improve.”