In dire need of midfield reinforcement over the summer transfer window, Everton went all out to please Carlo Ancelotti.
They brought in one of his former pupils, Allan, from Napoli to help shore up the squad in front of the defence, and subsequently targeted newly relegated Watford to get one of their better players in the shape of Abdoulaye Doucouré.
Paying around £20m for the former France U21 international, Everton have made the most of their new purchase by starting him in every single game in the league so far, moving him around in the process depending on how Ancelotti chooses to line up.
Starting as a central midfielder in the first six games, he was used on the right against Newcastle, before being moved into a midfield two for the last two fixtures against Fulham and Leeds United.
This new role, as he explained to RMC Sport following the loss to Marcelo Bielsa’s men, is the one he’s happiest in, even if he’s prepared to play wherever his manager decides to put him.
He said: “The first six games, I really had a defensive role, seeing as we were playing in a 4-3-3, I had the role of covering for James Rodríguez on the right hand side. So it’s true that I was bringing a lot less in attack than in the past few games, but since we’ve switched to a midfield two, I’ve been able to throw myself forward and score a goal.
“Yesterday (Saturday), I created, I’d say, the best chance for the team, so, obviously, I think I’ll be able to create a few more in the next few games. I think the role the manager has found me in the past two matches is the one that suits me the most”.
Doucouré found the back of the net for the first time in an Everton shirt on November 22nd in the 3-2 win over Fulham, making it one goal and one assist for the 27-year-old in 10 league appearances so far.