Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images

Bernard and Everton stars react as 21-year-old confirms loan exit on Instagram

Joao Virginia has confirmed that he has left Everton on loan to join Sporting Lisbon for the 2021-22 season. Bernard and Everton players have reacted.

Virginia, 21, joined Everton in the summer of 2018 from Arsenal – having only joined the Gunners in 2015 from Benfica’s academy.

A Portugal Under-21 international, Virginia has only played three games for Everton at senior level. He has 11 clean sheets in 22 Under-23 appearances.

With three years remaining on his Everton contract, Virginia has opted to leave and return to his home country. He joins Sporting on loan for 21-22.

A report from the Liverpool Echo says a permanent deal could be included. Posting on Instagram, Virginia has left the door open to an Everton return.

My 2021-22 Fantasy Premier League Tips, Tricks, & Predictions

Virginia leaves Everton: Bernard and other players react

It is a move that needed to happen for Virginia. Rafa Benitez has brought Asmir Begovic to the club as back-up to Jordan Pickford between the sticks.

At this stage in his career, Virginia needs to break into first-team football and a move to Sporting seems as though game time is more of a possibility.

Staying at Everton would have seen him be a regular at Under-23 level, but there was almost zero chance of game time. He might not start at Sporting.

But if he is second choice, he might get 10 appearances and earn himself a permanent deal in his home country. A future no.1 for Sporting.

Bernard, who has also left Everton this summer for Sharjah FC, sent a touching response to Virginia. Lucas Digne also reacted.

Bernard says: “That’s that brother. God bless you and always do your best, never forget that. Miss you.”

In other Everton news, the club have had a bid rejected for Daniel Jebbison.

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know

You may also like…