David Unsworth says Newcastle signing has been ‘outstanding’
David Unsworth stepped back from the limelight at the end of last November.
Hoping to get the manager’s job permanently after an ‘interesting’ spell as caretaker boss after Ronald Koeman was sacked, instead Everton brought in Sam Allardyce.
David Unsworth then stepped back into the role of managing Everton’s Under 23s (reserve) team.
The Under 23s end their season on Friday and Unsworth has given a glowing report to a player who they signed from Newcastle last July.
Lewis Gibson was Newcastle United highest rated young prospect and it was a massive disappointment when he opted to move to Goodison Park (see below) last July, only a week after turning 17.
A regular for the England youth team, Gibson was reported to have moved in a deal that could see Everton eventually pay as much as £6m if certain targets are reached.
David Unsworth says that the former Newcastle defender ‘has been outstanding’ and is ‘a natural leader’.
To underline that, bearing in mind Lewis Gibson is only 17, he has recently been made captain of the Everton Under 23s and is expected to perform that role once again on Friday, when they end their reserve team season against Man Utd.
David Unsworth talking to the Liverpool Echo:
“Lewis Gibson has been outstanding.
“He has got better and better and better and he is a natural born leader and he has been captain for the last couple of games.”
The Mag – 27 July 2017:
Everton have confirmed the transfer of top Newcastle prospect Lewis Gibson.
In a major blow for Rafa Benitez’ long-term plans, NUFC have lost the left-back who attracted the attention of all the top clubs.
Whilst the United boss is desperate to get rid of any number of unwanted first team squad players, he most definitely didn’t want to lose the 17 year old Geordie defender.
Sadly Rafa paying the price for what has gone on before he arrived at Newcastle United, with Lewis Gibson declaring ‘Everton is a brilliant club and when the opportunity presented itself I wanted to be part of it’.
The youngster’s statement showing just how far Newcastle still need to go before they can convince any young player, especially local ones, that St James Park has everything to offer.
No news of what the transfer was but previous reports have claimed it is around the £6m mark, with potentially some of that dependent on making so many appearances.
Everton Official Announcement:
Everton have completed the signing of highly-rated 17-year-old defender Lewis Gibson from Premier League rivals Newcastle United.
The defender has agreed a three-year contract with the Blues and will link up with David Unsworth’s Under-23s squad.
A product of Newcastle’s Academy, Gibson was a regular starter in the north east club’s Under-18s side last season and, after impressing, he was promoted to their reserve team.
His form for the Magpies earned him a call-up to England’s Under-17s side for this summer’s European Championships in which he was an ever-present as the Young Lions were beaten on penalties in the final by Spain.
“Everton is a brilliant club and when the opportunity presented itself I wanted to be part of it,” Gibson said.
The reputation has long been there that Everton brings through young players. You only have to look at the likes of Tom Davies, Kieran Dowell, Jonjoe Kenny and several others who are battling for first-team places to know this.
“I’m a player who is willing to put my body on the line, the kind of defender who likes to tackle and is not afraid. I’m excited to be part of things here and I want to continue developing as a player. This is where I want to be.”
Gibson becomes the fifth summer addition to Everton’s Premier League 2-winning Under-23s squad following the arrivals of defender Nathangelo Markelo, forwards Anton Donkor and Boris Mathis and winger Josh Bowler.
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