Josh King will thrive at Everton
Josh King: A Modern Football Enigma.
How do you ask yourself? Well, other than the fact that her name is the least Norwegian name there is, on paper her stats make absolutely no sense.
So began at Manchester United a few loan spells and was ultimately deemed insufficient to cut the mustard at Old Trafford; nothing wrong with that, many United academy graduates have fallen by the wayside.
Yet it is his record since his departure from the Red Devils that confuses us the most: 74 appearances in the Championship, five goals… five. That’s the same amount that Blackburn’s Adam Armstrong scored in three games in the current league season, and he’s barely the best Ronaldo (no offense).
How does it make sense that King proved he has the ability to score more than three times that amount in one? premier league season, but he does not find the net in the championship?
And his inability to find the net in one of his 12 league appearances for Bournemouth this season has dispelled any possible myth that he has only ever played in the league as a youngster or when he has since overtaken long its best; at 29, he should be at his peak.
So with that in mind, the Norway international will be delighted to have been given a deadline to leave England’s second tier as he joins Everton on a six-month contract.
Everything is in place for the former Cherries to excel at Goodison Park; they play decent football, there is a lot of creativity in the team, they have such a bad goalkeeper that they have to play on the front foot. BUT – and that’s a big but – there is a major factor that could determine if King is a success in Merseyside, and it has to do with his dismal league record.
No striker who is neither called up Lionel Messi nor Cristiano Ronaldo should maintain a level of consistency that will allow him to score more than 20 goals per season throughout his career, but King’s record is littered with more spikes and hollow than most.
How come he scores double digits in the Premier League some seasons and can’t find the net in the league below? It is simply at get down to attitude.
King has been a transfer target for Manchester United in the past, and he has not been shy about revealing his dismay at the move’s inability to materialize. And yet, it would be nice if he didn’t let his performances slip away.
He doesn’t seem to have the ability to separate the uncertainty of a huge potential return to his former club from his performances on the pitch, and they ultimately suffer.
In the same way he entered the league last summer, naturally his name is brought up as a potential signing for Premier League clubs, and once his dreams of moving have been left in tatters, he doesn’t show not the character needed to put that behind him and grind performances for the club that pays his salary.
So what does all of this have to do with his move to Everton, you ask?
Well, a spell at Goodison Park is going to ask King as many questions as when he was touted as a target for Manchester United during his time at Vitality Stadium.
The Norway international won’t be a regular starter under Carlo Ancelotti, and he’ll need to show character and attitude by biding his time, working hard, and then seizing the opportunity once it presents itself.
In some ways, it’s a very different kind of mental toughness required for what was needed when it was the source of constant speculation on the South Coast, but it’s a strength of character nonetheless.
With only a six-month contract, King is going to have to prove himself on Merseyside, and that could be enough motivation to see him thrive with the Toffees. Because rest assured Everton have the right setup and King has the ability to shine at the club, he just needs to show he has the heart for the fight.