EVERTON took centre stage on transfer deadline day, with £27million Colombia World Cup star Yerry Mina one of three big deals.
The Toffees’ Merseyside rivals Liverpool have been praised for their early business this summer but Everton enjoyed a flurry of excitement yesterday.
Central defender Mina is joined at Goodison Park by Barcelona team-mate Andre Gomes, the Portugal midfielder signing on loan for a £2m fee.
And Brazil international winger Bernard, a free agent after leaving Shakhtar Donetsk, completed his signing as expected.
The moves were all announced in a rush ahead of the early 5pm deadline, while there was talk of Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma arriving after that as deals went through for hours after the window closed.
I choose Everton because of all the good things I had heard about manager Marco Silva
Everton’s announcement of the Bernard signing was accompanied by comments from the player stating how much he was looking forward to working with boss Marco Silva.
Bernard, 25, who has been capped 14 times by Brazil and won three league titles with Shakhtar, said: ‘I chose Everton because of all the things I had heard about Marco Silva and after speaking to him I was happy with what he said to me.
‘The manager made me feel confident about playing here. He is a very good coach and he has achieved really good things at other clubs. Everton is a club with a great structure and a lot of tradition, historically the fourth most successful club in England. When I found out about this opportunity and what the manager wanted out of me I was happy.
‘That is why I made my choice, because of the confidence both the manager and the club showed in me. I did not need any convincing to come here. I believe I will be able to show my best as a player here.’
Mina caught the eye during the World Cup and scored against England in the last 16. The 23-year-old, who struggled for first-team opportunities at the Nou Camp, had also been linked with Manchester United.
A Barcelona statement read: ‘Barcelona and Everton have reached an agreement over the transfer of the player Yerry Mina. We would like to publicly express their thanks to Yerry Mina for his commitment and dedication and wishes him all the best for the future.’
A further statement on 25-year-old Gomes added: ‘Barcelona and Everton have reached an agreement over the loan of the player Andre Gomes for the 2018/19 season.’