McCarthy: I'm loving it at Everton

, 29 July, 25comments  |  Jump to most recent

James McCarthy says he is looking forward to what he describes as "a big season ahead" at Everton on the back of a dream start to life at Goodison Park following his move from Wigan Athletic last summer.

The 23 year-old midfielder became the second-most expensive signing in the club's history when Roberto Martinez drafted him in from his old club just minutes before the transfer deadline last September and he says it was "wonderful" to return to the top flight with Everton.

I loved playing for Wigan," he told Mihir Bose in the Evening Standard. "They won the FA Cup but [with their relegation] getting back to playing in the Premier League was a big target and it was wonderful to do so with Everton.

"It was an eye opener: all that history and the fan base. The fans have been brilliant from day one. I'm loving it. That is what you dream of as a kid.

The Irish international revealed, however, that he came close to joining Tottenham Hotspur that day but the Londoners were beaten to the punch when the Blues stumped up Dave Whelan's asking price where Daniel Levy was hesitant.

Tottenham didn't come up with the money but Everton did within the last couple of hours [of the transfer window]," McCarthy recalls. "Obviously it was just one of those things with Tottenham.

Such was his impact at Goodison last season that there have been reports this summer that Manchester United are interested in paying double what Everton did a year ago in order to shore up their midfield following the Red Devils' disappointing showing last season.

While much is being made of the emphasis Bose placed on the United angle, McCarthy's reaction to the speculation was revealing:

If a club like Manchester United are interested, obviously you are doing a good job. Then with a laugh he adds: We will see what happens.

Martinez, whom McCarthy describes as "a very good thinker", would be a very reluctant seller and the Scottish-born player offered no hint that he wants to leave Goodison any time soon.

[A]ll that history and the fan base. The fans have been brilliant from day one. I'm loving it. That is what you dream of as a kid.

James McCarthy

I've known [Martinez] five years now and he's brilliant. Last season, the lads here knew he wanted to change the system they were used to. They adapted very quickly and well.

"They are a great set of lads and, with the gaffer bringing in Gareth Barry, I have just loved it. We had the highest points' tally we have ever had in the Premier League which was brilliant.

Having helped get Everton there for the first time in five seasons, McCarthy is also looking forward to playing in Europe. You would like to get into the Champions League but, thankfully, we've got the Europa League," he continued. "A lot of people say the Europa League is not such a big thing but it was a massive achievement for each and everyone of us at the club. It will be tough but we will give it everything.

Obviously, it will be a long season with the Europa League and I am sure the gaffer will bring in rotation. To be honest, I'm looking forward to getting into the season and getting going again. It is a big season ahead.


Reader Comments (25)

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Jon Ferguson
1 Posted 29/07/2014 at 18:48:27
I wasn’t convinced we should sign him beforehand, but he turned out to be a cracking player, one of the core we need to build the squad around.
Sid Logan
2 Posted 29/07/2014 at 19:23:27

I think they key is in the laugh when he talks about a man Man U bid. I don't believe for one minute he would leave us at this moment in time. Who would swap Roberto for Louis Van Ego regardless of dosh?

Not going to be a problem for the forseeable!

Lyndon Lloyd
4 Posted 29/07/2014 at 19:42:00
Exactly, Sid. That's why I left the entire paragraph in there, including Bose's words referencing his laugh because they've been left out in other media reports carrying McCarthy's quotes.

And, really, Bose's emphasis is all wrong given McCarthy's overall responses. Predictable, given the bias towards all things United, but wrong.

Iakovos Iasonidis
5 Posted 29/07/2014 at 19:43:35
He proved me wrong, I rated him as a player but not for the money we payed. Well done lad.
Christopher Kelly
6 Posted 29/07/2014 at 19:56:56
Fantastic player and the type we need to keep buying... I’m just struggling to remember a player saying it will be a regular, normal season ahead"....

Red meat for the masses

Shane Corcoran
7 Posted 29/07/2014 at 20:10:46
Just goes to show that you can't trust everything you read even if it's true. I wasn't overjoyed when I read the "we'll see what happens" bit initially but the laugh changes it for me.
Tony Draper
8 Posted 29/07/2014 at 20:36:31
Great managers value key players.

The players are key because they need no educating, they just embody the very style, method and spirit of the managers thoughts.

Numerous managers trail certain players around throughout their career, just as surely as their coaches and staff.

Many of us Evertonians understood Roberto's affinity/loyalty with McCarthy, the price tag looked a shade steep though. Well, Roberto was correct on both scores, right man well priced. Higher valued now.

I have begun to consider Roberto as a true "Chess Master", he plays the game with considered and important future moves in mind, he doesn't fear "apparent threat", because he will already have moved his important pieces to where the need to be in order to achieve.

He has said that money only accelerates the process.
I suspect that he actually relishes the approach without a fat cheque book.

There is something, daring and singlehanded about his warmhearted approach.

I genuinely believe that he wants to win on his terms alone.
Roberto is a very nice chap, but never underestimate his underlying motivation.

Sid Logan
9 Posted 29/07/2014 at 20:55:39
you make some good points. Roberto is an extremely amiable guy but someone who should never be underestimated. His judgement of players is exceptional which is why he sees Lukaku's long term potential and thankfully Mourinho doesn't. We now have to hope that we land him!

I also think some of his recent pronouncements about who and how many he wants to sign, which I know some have found annoying, have been designed to, both keep the fans informed (unlike his predecessor) and also keep on their toes those, who sit in smoke filled rooms (or the modern day equivalent) and conduct transfer negotiations on behalf of the club! It's another way of saying: make sure you deliver!

I believe that Roberto will make sure they will!

James Byrne
10 Posted 29/07/2014 at 21:06:58
We have a fantastic manager in Roberto, but we're now also bringing together some talented players. McCarthy has the potential to be a great Evertonian and the difference with this lad, is that he wants to play for us. Big season ahead, you bet mate.
Keith Knowles
13 Posted 29/07/2014 at 22:26:38
Future Captain
Colin Glassar
14 Posted 29/07/2014 at 22:28:45
Ssn and the media in general are in a state of shock, and outrage, that Everton players should have the cheek to turn down one of their beloved clubs. What will messrs Lipton, Holt, Richardson, Beasley, Custiss, Wallace etc...think about this?
Colin Glassar
15 Posted 29/07/2014 at 22:43:07
What did I just say about Martin Lipton and the top 4 obsessed media? Lipton is saying that Chelsea have put a £30m price tag on Lukaku and that is way above what Everton can afford.

This man, Lipton, has an obsessive hatred of EFC and will go to any means to put us down. Ignore this knobhead and his shite articles. And he's a fucking Spurs fan to boot.

Tony J Williams
17 Posted 30/07/2014 at 13:00:58
I wasn't convinced at first but I am certainly a convert now.

Brilliant player that I think will get better and will hopefully be given a bit of freedom to go forward too

Paul Smith
19 Posted 01/08/2014 at 11:16:22
I think James is definitely the next captain of Everton; in the main, his first season was a roaring success. My only negative is with Barry sitting he needs to start getting past the front man and scoring more goals as we definitely need more goals from midfield.
Andrew Ellams
20 Posted 01/08/2014 at 11:26:52
Skybet have had a rush on McCarthy to Man Utd today and have dropped the odds to 1/3
Conor Skelly
21 Posted 01/08/2014 at 12:47:13
Sky bet have him at 1/3 to join Utd now from 5/4, having reported a significant surge in bets over night.
Paul Mackie
22 Posted 01/08/2014 at 13:03:58
I would be VERY surprised if he leaves us. He's one of Roberto's most important players.
Brent Stephens
23 Posted 01/08/2014 at 13:06:35
On the other hand, fearing the worst, what if Besic and Barry were signed knowing (at least by Billy Big Bollocks) that McCarthy could then be sold at a profit?

I know, paranoid to the nth degree. It aint gonna happen.

Dave Lynch
25 Posted 01/08/2014 at 13:17:06
Not a Van Gaal type player, move on.
Ian McDowell
26 Posted 02/08/2014 at 09:42:53
Skybet are usually not far wrong and odds of 1/3 plus with the signing of Besic I expect this one to go through. Would be very disappointed to lose McCarthy.
Patrick Murphy
27 Posted 02/08/2014 at 10:42:11
Ian #26 Are you saying that the odds on McCarthy going to OT are over 3-1 on? There is very little that suggests that McCarthy wants to go to OT or that Roberto is willing to sell him but if you say that's what the odds are it could well happen. It would be a bit of kick in the teeth to both the team and the supporters if it came to pass, however it could see Roberto re-united with Cleverly and the possible addition of a.n.other player(s) but I personally can't see it happening.
Colin Glassar
28 Posted 02/08/2014 at 10:42:41
No chance.
Chris James
29 Posted 02/08/2014 at 10:52:35
Glassardamos has spoken, discussion over.
Move away folks there's nothing to see here.
Jim Knightley
30 Posted 02/08/2014 at 10:50:56
Every season there are a ton of inane bet surges which never materialize into transfers. Why would we sell McCarthy?
Pete Hughes
31 Posted 02/08/2014 at 10:54:12
It wouldn’t surprise me if he was sold; Billyboy will want to claw back some if not all of that £28M!

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