Everton FC’s new on-loan Spanish starlet Gerard Deulofeu reckons that training with Lionel Messi has helped him flourish.
The highly-rated 19-year-old Barcelona forward said he can’t wait to get his Goodison stint started, after Roberto Martinez won the race for his temporary signature over a host of other top European clubs.
Deulofeu, who scored 18 goals for the Catalan giants’ B team last term and made a number of first-team substitute bows, said: “Obviously training at Barcelona is a fantastic experience.
“You train alongside players like Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta who are clearly some of the best players in the world. To learn from them is a very nice experience. I’m very keen to get started and I’m delighted to be at such a big and historic football club. I really can’t wait to get started.”
“I’m an attacking player and I can play wide,” he said. “I’m quite quick, quite decent at one-on-one situations and I’m looking forward very much to helping the team.
“The truth is that I follow the Premier League quite a lot. It’s one of the best leagues in the world.”
Deulofeu will join up with the Blues squad later this summer after enjoying a well-earned break following his involvement in the recent Under-20s World Cup in Turkey – an experience he enjoyed.
He added: “It was a great and pleasant experience. We were up against some teams like Mexico who we were able to get through against. We didn’t quite manage it against Uruguay, but it was a great experience.
“I’m really looking forward to meeting my new team-mates and getting started. Obviously I have got a few days holiday coming my way because I have just finished in the Under-20s World Cup but I can’t wait to get started.”
On linking up with his fellow Catalan Martinez, he said: “He did a great job at Wigan and we have spoken on the phone. I look forward to meeting him very soon.”