Everton are finally starting to see the best of summer signing Bernard. After missing a pre-season the Brazilian did not immediately go into the starting picture at Goodison Park. Marco Silva wanted to ease in the creative midfielder and it is now paying off dividends.
Yesterday, the 26-year-old was handed his first Premier League start for the Toffees and it is fair to say he made an impact. The diminutive Brazilian put in a sensational display as Everton defeated Leicester City 2-1 at the King Power Stadium.
Operating from the left, he had the Leicester defence bamboozled for much of the game and provided the assist for Richarlison’s opener.
It was, excuse the hyperbole, one of the best individual Everton performances of the post-David Moyes era – up there with Romelu Lukaku v Arsenal in April 2014, Ross Barkley v Southampton in August 2015 and Tom Davies virtuoso display v Manchester City in 2017. Dare say it? Bernard’s display was perhaps better than all three.
The fact he was a free transfer is now baffling. Five years ago the likes of Tottenham and Arsenal shirked at the player’s £21.5 million price-tag, as the Brazilian himself confirmed to FourFourTwo magazine.
Based on yesterday’s display, he is easily worth that much. Everton snapping him up on a free transfer this summer could be the bargain of the year.