Former Everton defender Michael Ball has been discussing the impact of Tom Davies in the recent win over West Ham United in the Premier League.
Davies was handed a start in the game and put in an excellent performance leaving plenty of Everton fans over-the-moon that he had finally been given a chance.
Davies initially burst onto the scene as something of an attacking midfielder but Ball, who came through the ranks at Everton himself, believes that has worked against him.
Davies is, in fact, better in a deeper role and speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Ball clearly feels that is where his future lies.
“Tom’s downfall has probably been the way he came on to the scene and played further up the pitch in midfield, making a big impact and scoring that goal against Manchester City.
“Not many people might know this but before that Tom was more of a sitting midfielder for Everton’s Under-23s and youth teams but maybe because of his strength and his physicality they played him slightly further forward as they didn’t quite trust him in that role.
“Alongside Andre Gomes he looked at home again. He was hungry for the ball and rather than the sideways passing that we’ve seen from a lot of our midfield, he was breaking the lines, looking forward.”
Ball has hit the nail on the head here. Davies’ slight frame has seen him somewhat written off in a deeper position even though it is where he plays his best football.
His desire to move the ball forward, rather than side-to-side, was a major difference in Everton’s performance at the weekend compared to the often predictable styles of both Fabian Delph and, in particular, Morgan Schneiderlin.
Hopefully, this can be the start of a long run of regular football for the Everton youngster. Especially if it leads to more performances like Saturday.