Martinez: Pair Can Improve Us
Boss confident Joel and Deulofeu will bring plenty to the squad.
Roberto Martinez is excited about what Everton’s new Spanish duo will bring to the football club.
Four new faces have arrived at Goodison Park this week, including goalkeeper Joel Robles from Atletico Madrid and Gerard Deulofeu who joined on a season-long loan from Barcelona.
Robles, who has penned a long-term five-year contract, spent the second half of last season on loan at Wigan Athletic, making 13 appearances during his five-month stay.
It was his performances during that stint – including an outstanding display in the FA Cup final - which convinced Martinez he has the temperament to succeed in English football.
And at 23 years of age, the Blues boss knows he is only going to get better.
“As you know, since Jan Mucha has moved on, Tim Howard was the only goalkeeper at the football club,” Martinez told evertontv.
“It was important to get another goalkeeper with the quality of Joel on a permanent basis. He has experience in the Premier League and was part of the squad that won the European Under-21 Championships with Spain.
“He is someone who is going to give us great protection and fight with Tim Howard for the goalkeeping position and push him all the way.
“He comes from a rich vein of successful goalkeepers. David De Gea, as you well know, came to the Premier League - he and Joel grew up together. Atletico Madrid’s school have developed some outstanding youngsters and I was delighted to see him performing in the manner that he did (last season).
“To bring him across at his young age and see how well he adapted to the British game, he ended up being Wigan’s number one goalkeeper and winning a major trophy. That’s the aspect that impressed me more than anything.
“You know the quality he has as a goalkeeper but to be able to handle the high pressure games that Wigan had and to have the temperament to always do the right things and give a calmness to the back four, it was quite impressive at his age.”
Joel could make his Blues debut against Austria Vienna on Sunday – a match fans can watch live on evertontv.
However, supporters will have to wait a little bit longer to see Deulofeu in action as the teenager has been given an extended summer break following his involvement at the Under-20 World Cup.
Hailed as a ‘coup’ by many national newspapers, Martinez is naturally delighted the forward decided the best place to develop his promising career is under his guidance at Goodison Park.
“You have to keep checking that he is only 19 because he is an incredible footballer,” explained Martinez.
“Yes, he is very young and needs to develop but what has pleased me more than anything is that he had so many offers to join different football clubs and he has chosen Everton.
“He has told me that the history and knowledge of the fans for good football will help him, as well as working with a group of players that he knows have got incredible experience that he can learn from.
“He is an electric footballer, exciting to watch in one-versus-one situations and he can be described as an old type of winger that the modern game needs.
“Again, I’m really excited to bring him to the football club.”