Digne Explains Why Ancelotti Link-Up Was Worth The Wait

Lucas Digne is belatedly fulfilling a personal ambition by playing for Carlo Ancelotti after the pair’s paths nearly crossed in France seven years ago.

Everton left-back Digne’s move from Lille to Paris Saint-Germain in 2013 was a long time in the making and completed weeks before the new campaign.

One of his original motivations for switching to the French capital was the opportunity to work with Ancelotti.

The Italian manager, however, was snared by Real Madrid before Digne’s arrival was confirmed.

Digne promptly won successive Ligue 1 titles with PSG and Ancelotti validated his decision to swap France for Spain by leading Real Madrid to their fabled ‘Decima’ – the 10th Champions League title which grew into an obsession for the Bernabeu club following their ninth success in 2002.

“I spoke to Leonardo [Sporting Director] when I joined PSG but it was more for Ancelotti [I wanted the move] – I went to play for him," said Digne.

“But we ended up working together eventually and I am very happy with this.

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09:01 Tue 19 May 2020

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“Everybody knows him. He is a top coach with huge knowledge and experience, he has won the Champions League three times.

"He brings a good atmosphere to the team, he is very relaxed and close to all the players. I think he can help us a lot.

"We are building something very good at Everton and we believe we can do something special."

Digne gained instant popularity with Evertonians following his transfer from Barcelona in 2018.

Fresh from claiming a third domestic league championship of his career at the Nou Camp, the Frenchman adapted to Premier League football with minimum fuss and crowned his debut campaign by claiming Everton’s player-of-the-season prize.

He has started every game for which he’s been available since Ancelotti’s appointment – other than the visit to Newcastle, where Digne was one of five players rested – and was confident of a run at the European places before the season was suspended in March.

Everton are poised for a training return on Wednesday, however, as the first steps towards a top-flight resumption are implemented.

Ancelotti’s side has nine games remaining when the action gets under way and Digne is keen for Everton to make a proper go of attempting to qualify for next term’s Europa League.

The 26-year-old is equally aiming to continue burnishing his reputation as one of the continent’s finest full-backs.

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WATCH VIDEO 107:31 Sun 22 May 2022

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"If I can be one of the best left-backs in England, I will be happy - and if I can be one the best best in Europe, even more," said Digne.

"Speaking personally, I am very happy with my second season. 

"But the most important thing is the team, because without the team you can do nothing.

"Our ambition this season must be to finish in Europe.

"If we can do that, it will be the best for the Club.

"We have very good players and we will all give our best, then see what happens.

"We have to keep this mentality to do our best every time and I am sure we will finish very high."