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Bolasie Aiming To Kick On After First Goodison Goal

Winger takes another step towards rediscovering peak form.

Yannick Bolasie says he will need plenty of “confidence and courage” to hit his peak form – and his strike against Manchester City is another step towards reaching his electric best.

Bolasie drove in his first Goodison Park goal on Saturday to follow up decisive contributions in the victories over Brighton & Hove Albion and Stoke City before the international break.

The winger has been carefully eased back into action by Everton’s performance department after more than 12 months on the sidelines with a knee injury suffered in December 2016.

He has now started three Premier League matches on the spin for the first time in 16 months and is grateful for the belief manager Sam Allardyce has invested in him on the road back to fitness.

Bolasie’s goal against City on Saturday – a low shot from outside the area, hit early to catch goalkeeper Ederson off guard – suggested the 28-year-old is steadily rediscovering the bravery and ambition which are so integral to his own direct game.

“I feel I am building up slowly but I know in myself I can do a little bit more, it takes confidence and courage to go and kick on,” Bolasie told evertontv

“Personally, I still do not think I feel in the best shape but, hopefully, that goal is a step towards it. I am not quite where I want to be physically… and just with my style of play, I do not think I am there yet.

“I will go back over the game and look at what type of ball to put in at the right time. I could get more assists… that is for sure.

“The manager has had faith in me from the moment I came back. I could not just come back into the Premier League and expect to be the same Yannick as I was before, the Premier League has such high intensity. But I am getting there slowly.”

Bolasie was back in action well ahead of his anticipated return date when he played in the Toffees' scoreless draw at West Bromwich Albion on Boxing Day last year.

He subsequently started matches against Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur after the turn of the year, before being used more sparingly while he concentrated on ramping up his fitness levels ahead of the season's run-in.

Bolasie was recalled to the starting XI against Brighton and supplied the cross which led to his side's opening goal in a 2-0 victory. He sent over a similarly telling delivery in the lead up to the first of Cenk Tosun's two strikes as the Blues overcame Stoke at the bet365 Stadium two weeks ago.

That win in the Potteries had Everton sixth in the form table in the period since Allardyce took charge back in November.

City, however, prevented the Toffees from winning a third successive match when they became only the second visitors to win at Goodison in 11 Premier League fixtures. Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling all scored before half-time to leave the hosts with a mountain to climb in the second 45 minutes.

And while Bolasie accepted his side had lost to a special team – one which has amassed 84 points and scored 88 goals in 31 matches on its seemingly inevitable march to the title – he was nevertheless frustrated he did not convert an excellent Dominic Calvert-Lewin cross when the Blues trailed only to Sane’s thundering fourth-minute volley.

“It was pleasing to score but I had a chance earlier on that I should have buried,” said Bolasie, who joined Everton from Crystal Palace in summer 2016, having switched to Palace from Championship club Bristol City in 2012/13. “It was one of those days… results are the only thing that matter and I would rather the team won and I put in a shift to help us get the three points.

“It was a tough game, against the best team I have faced in the Premier League.

“You could say it was always going to be tough, but we had a couple of lapses of concentration and lost the first half which made it hard for us to get back into the game.”

Sat 31 Mar 2018

Bolasie Aiming To Kick On After First Goodison Goal

Yannick Bolasie says he will need plenty of “confidence and courage” to hit his peak form – and his strike against Manchester City is another step towards reaching his electric best.

Bolasie drove in his first Goodison Park goal on Saturday to follow up decisive contributions in the victories over Brighton & Hove Albion and Stoke City before the international break.

The winger has been carefully eased back into action by Everton’s performance department after more than 12 months on the sidelines with a knee injury suffered in December 2016.

He has now started three Premier League matches on the spin for the first time in 16 months and is grateful for the belief manager Sam Allardyce has invested in him on the road back to fitness.

Bolasie’s goal against City on Saturday – a low shot from outside the area, hit early to catch goalkeeper Ederson off guard – suggested the 28-year-old is steadily rediscovering the bravery and ambition which are so integral to his own direct game.

“I feel I am building up slowly but I know in myself I can do a little bit more, it takes confidence and courage to go and kick on,” Bolasie told evertontv

“Personally, I still do not think I feel in the best shape but, hopefully, that goal is a step towards it. I am not quite where I want to be physically… and just with my style of play, I do not think I am there yet.

“I will go back over the game and look at what type of ball to put in at the right time. I could get more assists… that is for sure.

“The manager has had faith in me from the moment I came back. I could not just come back into the Premier League and expect to be the same Yannick as I was before, the Premier League has such high intensity. But I am getting there slowly.”

Bolasie was back in action well ahead of his anticipated return date when he played in the Toffees' scoreless draw at West Bromwich Albion on Boxing Day last year.

He subsequently started matches against Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur after the turn of the year, before being used more sparingly while he concentrated on ramping up his fitness levels ahead of the season's run-in.

Bolasie was recalled to the starting XI against Brighton and supplied the cross which led to his side's opening goal in a 2-0 victory. He sent over a similarly telling delivery in the lead up to the first of Cenk Tosun's two strikes as the Blues overcame Stoke at the bet365 Stadium two weeks ago.

That win in the Potteries had Everton sixth in the form table in the period since Allardyce took charge back in November.

City, however, prevented the Toffees from winning a third successive match when they became only the second visitors to win at Goodison in 11 Premier League fixtures. Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling all scored before half-time to leave the hosts with a mountain to climb in the second 45 minutes.

And while Bolasie accepted his side had lost to a special team – one which has amassed 84 points and scored 88 goals in 31 matches on its seemingly inevitable march to the title – he was nevertheless frustrated he did not convert an excellent Dominic Calvert-Lewin cross when the Blues trailed only to Sane’s thundering fourth-minute volley.

“It was pleasing to score but I had a chance earlier on that I should have buried,” said Bolasie, who joined Everton from Crystal Palace in summer 2016, having switched to Palace from Championship club Bristol City in 2012/13. “It was one of those days… results are the only thing that matter and I would rather the team won and I put in a shift to help us get the three points.

“It was a tough game, against the best team I have faced in the Premier League.

“You could say it was always going to be tough, but we had a couple of lapses of concentration and lost the first half which made it hard for us to get back into the game.”