£9.5m Everton defender expects to settle quickly

Ramiro Funes Mori expects to settle into Premier League life quickly, following his £9.5million move from River Plate to Everton.

The 24-year-old Argentina international, who won the first of his two caps in March this year, completed his move to Goodison Park on transfer deadline day when he agreed a five-year contract with the Merseyside club. Mori has revealed he has been a keen admirer of the English game for some time, and he feels he has the attributes to settle quickly in the top-flight.

“Since I was a kid I’ve been watching the Premier League and it’s the best league in the world,” said the defender, who started his career at FC Dallas. “There are lots of very big players who have played in this league – very important players like Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo, and a lot of others. To follow their steps is fantastic. It’s a very intense league and dynamic.

“It’s a high level of competition all over the pitch. Obviously I’ll have to adapt to that, but it shouldn’t take too long. I’m looking forward to testing myself against the attackers in the league. The strikers are very strong, very skilful and I will have to be concentrating all the time to do my best to stop them and help the team. I am excited and hopefully I can win many things here.”

In more good news for Evertonians, Mori will be competing for a place in the heart of Roberto Martinez’s back four with John Stones. Chelsea had made three bids for the England international, who submitted a transfer request in an attempt to seal a move to London, but the Toffees rejected them all and are now confident the 21-year-old will retune his focus to their cause.

Meanwhile, Aaron Lennon also completed a deadline-day move to Everton having spent time on loan on Merseyside last season. The 28-year-old was in the last year of his contract at Tottenham Hotspur, who had frozen him out to such an extent they didn’t even hand him a squad number, and he completed a £4.5million move to the Toffees after agreeing a three-year deal.

“We are delighted to welcome Aaron Lennon back to Everton,” manager Martinez told the official club website. “We know we are getting a player our fans know inside out. He had a major role in the second half of our season and we’re looking forward to Aaron kicking on and continuing to enjoy his football, as well as being the productive player we know he can be.”


IN: Ramiro Funes Mori (River Plate £9.5m), Aaron Lennon (Tottenham Hotspur £4.5m), Gerard Deulofeu (Barcelona £4.2m), Mason Holgate (Barnsley £1m), Leandro Rodriguez (River Plate Montevideo £500,000), Tom Cleverley (Manchester United free).

OUT: Chris Long (Burnley undisclosed), Sylvain Distin (Bournemouth free), Antolin Alcaraz (released), Francisco Junior (Wigan Athletic loan), Luke Garbutt (Fulham loan).

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