What The Papers Say - June 14
A summary of today's Everton coverage in the papers.
The views on this page are taken from the local and national media and do not necessarily reflect the views of Everton.
JACK RODWELL has revealed his personal frustration at last season by declaring: "I just stopped still."
And he’s already looking forward to next season as he aims to get his career going again.
Everton’s 20-year- old midfielder, currently in Denmark with England Under-21s at the European Championships, feels he has failed to make the progress he expected to over the past year.
Rodwell made just 28 appearances in all competitions, largely due to a serious ankle injury sustained in September, but on his return to fitness he failed to find the form to establish himself in the Blues’ starting line-up.
"'I’ll only look back on last season with a sense of frustration," he said. "The couple of seasons before that, I had felt as if I had done really well. I'd played in a lot of games and I had tended to play in age groups ahead of the ones I was in. It’s been a fast progression.
"But last season, I just stopped still because of one thing and another. When I have been out of the team, I haven't been able to get back in.
"I just hope it’s finally behind me now and I am looking forward to next season already."
Rodwell, who showed promise when he came on for the final 20 minutes of England’s 1-1 draw with Spain on Sunday, also revealed the help he has had in trying to recapture his momentum from the Blues’ senior players, particularly skipper Phil Neville.
"I'm a strong person and I can motivate myself to keep focused when I'm not in the team," added Rodwell.
"There are a lot of senior pros to look up to. Phil Neville has been great in terms of the pointers he has given me.
"He's told me what to do and when to do it when I have been injured, how to deal with any frustrations I have had when I have not been picked."
Meanwhile, the Blues’ young French winger Magaye Gueye is aiming to come back for pre-season bigger and stronger so he can cope with the physical demands of the Premier League.
"It is the biggest difference," he said. "Here you have to be strong and ready to fight for every ball. In France it is not like that. I have had to get stronger and I am ready now."
Gueye made only four starts last season, plus as many substitute appearances.
But he says he needed to acclimatise to a new country and a new style of football and now he feels more settled in his new surroundings.
"It was difficult at first," he added. "When I first came here I was a little homesick. I did not know many people, did not understand the language and did not know my way around.
"But now my English has really improved. Sylvain Distin and Louis Saha have helped me a lot and practice with me.
"Seamus Coleman and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov live in the same building as me. My girlfriend also speaks very good English too and she helps me a lot.
"It has helped me settle. I like Liverpool and feel good here.
"The people are nice and I feel happy and confident living in the city.
"I have favourite restaurants, cafes and shops and feel good."
Blues fans were treated to a few telling glimpses of Gueye’s talent towards the end of last season.
"My first game was against Aston Villa," Gueye added. "I think I did quite well for the 20 minutes I was on the pitch and we got a draw.
"After that I played at Wolverhampton and in that game I was so tired. I wasn’t sure why but I had very little energy. I had a chance to score but it didn’t happen. Hopefully I will score my first goal soon.
"My last game was against Blackburn and I had some good moments in that game too. I thought I played better."
JACK RODWELL admits England were taught a lesson by Spain – but has vowed to make them pay in the final.
Stuart Pearce’s Young Lions looked more like cubs against a slick and experienced Spanish team who led for most of their Group B opener in Herning on Sunday night.
Spain took the lead with a handball goal from Real Zaragoza midfielder Ander Herrera and then ran rings around England with their passing game.
But Danny Welbeck scored a late equaliser to rescue a point and Jack Rodwell reckons it will be a different story if the two teams meet again in the final on June 25.
The Everton midfielder said: “This game taught us a lesson. Potentially we could play them in the final, so it was a great lesson.
“We know what they are about now and we also know that we will improve as well. We want to dominate the next two games and make sure we take our chances.
“It has been a good lesson, definitely. This result has helped our confidence. But I wouldn’t say we’d need a change of tactics if we play them again. There were times when they kept possession that bit more and controlled it, but I’d say we are capable of doing that in the next game against Ukraine.
“It would have been exceptionally difficult had we lost knowing that we would probably have needed to beat the Czech Republic in the last game to go through.
“That was the case with a couple of minutes to go but that goal has created a lot of team spirit. We are all buzzing. We all know that we can dig deep.
“I didn’t even see the handball. Hopefully the next game we play against them isn’t settled like that, and if it is, I hope it’s us that gets away with it for once.”
England looked a much better team when Rodwell came off the bench in the second half and he played a part in Welbeck’s equaliser.
But it has been a frustrating season for the 20-year-old, who failed to build on an impressive breakthrough campaign at Goodison Park.
Rodwell has long been linked with a move to Manchester United but their interest appears to have cooled, leaving him in limbo.
Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp was in Herning to watch him, while Manchester City and Chelsea are also keeping tabs on him.
But Rodwell insists the uncertainty about his future won’t distract him from England’s aim of winning the trophy in Denmark.
And he looks set to start tomorrow against Ukraine, who are bottom of Group B after losing 2-1 to an impressive Czech Republic side in their opener.
Rodwell said: “It’s been quite easy to stay focused. I’m at a tournament and that is what we are thinking about at the minute, making things right on the pitch.
“It’s been a tough year and I haven’t played a lot for the Under-21s. The others have played close to 10 games each. I’ve only played one or two. I was disappointed not to start but I’m sure everyone else was too. I felt good when I came one. I finally feel fresh.
“I’ve shaken off a lot of injuries this season but I feel good now, mentally and physically.”
David Moyes faces a fight with Atletico Madrid for Real Madrid’s 20-year-old starlet Sergio Canales.
The Everton boss wants the midfielder on loan but Atletico see him as a makeweight in Jose Mourinho’s move for Sergio Aguero.
But Canales fears a switch to Atletico would make him a hate figure.