‘I feel really fit in myself and feel I could play’: Everton new boy James Rodriguez desperate for debut at Tottenham despite only playing competitively once since February
- James Rodriguez is chomping at the bit to make his first bow for Everton
- The Toffees begin their Premier League campaign away to Tottenham
- The playmaker has not played a competitive game of football for ten months
- The Colombian has hinted at hopes of attaining Champions League qualification
Everton’s new glamour signing James Rodriguez has told Carlo Ancelotti he is ready to make his debut at Tottenham today despite playing only once since February.
Rodriguez had been frozen out by Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid before his £12million move to Everton last week but the 29-year-old Colombian superstar still believes he can hit the ground running.
‘I feel ready now,’ he insisted. ‘I feel really fit in myself and feel I could play right away.
James Rodriguez has told Carlo Ancelotti he is ready to make his debut at Tottenham
‘Sometimes when you’ve had a lay-off, it can be beneficial in terms of your general level of fitness and readiness. I am here to help everyone.’
Rodriguez earned a move to Madrid in 2014 after a string of outstanding performances and goals for Colombia at that summer’s World Cup.
He struggled to live up to his superstar status in Spain and spent two seasons on loan with Bayern Munich before returning to Real where he last featured on June 21.
Though Everton may appear a step down for someone who has graced clubs of that stature, Rodriguez has twice been signed under current Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti and spoke to his international team-mate Yerry Mina before committing to Goodison.
James linked up with Carlo Ancelotti again to become Everton’s marquee summer signing
‘I spoke a lot with Yerry and also to Luka Modric about what the Premier League is going to be like,’ he revealed.
‘I was aware of it anyway because I have watched the league on television for many years. They told me it is intense, high tempo, up and down games. Physical strength is important.
‘But I believe when you know you can play football and have ability and skill, it is easier to adapt to any style of football.
‘There are a few South American players at Everton and of course that will make things easier, not just on the field but the day-to-day routine, getting to know the city.’
Everton’s last superstar signing Samuel Eto’o lasted only six months but Rodriguez is sure this new era will see more big names follow him.
After falling out of favour at Real Madrid, James has not played competitively for ten months
‘The club has shown its intent with the three signings they have made in this window (Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure). It helps when you have a great and hugely knowledgeable manager. Let’s hope in the next few years, others want to join us.
‘There are serious-minded people at this club about getting Everton into the Champions League.
‘We have to fight hard and show consistency. We can’t afford to be up and down in our performances.’
In that respect, today’s starter with Spurs is a good marker. Everton tailed of at the end of last season and won just one of their last six games including a 1-0 defeat at White Hart Lane.
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