By Peter Akinbo
Former Premier League midfielder Jamie O’Hara believes Arsenal got the deal of a lifetime when they sold Nigeria international Alex Iwobi to Everton for an initial £28m fee, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.
O’Hara is of the opinion that the Toffees overpaid far above Iwobi’s true value to bring him to the Merseyside club.
Iwobi is one of the few players who genuinely did all he could to keep Frank Lampard in the managerial seat and if Everton’s end of season awards were to take place six months ahead of schedule, for whatever reason, the former Gunners youngster would sweep the stakes.
Lampard’s decision to install Iwobi as a buzzing, box-to-box central midfielder was one of his greatest triumphs at Goodison Park; a man who spent most of his time out wide under Rafa Benitez and Carlo Ancelotti playing the best football of his Everton career in a new role.
Nonetheless, the initial £28m fee Everton paid Arsenal on the final day of the 2019 summer transfer window is still another example of this now cash-strapped club paying well over the odds for a talented but relatively-limited footballer.
“Iwobi; Arsenal must have been laughing!” says O’Hara, the ex-Portsmouth, Tottenham and Wolves man.
Iwobi has played all but 20 minutes of Everton’s 2022/23 Premier League campaign; scoring once and setting up seven more in all competitions.
PUNCH Sports Extra had earlier reported that talks over a new five-year deal got underway as far back as last November.
“He’s one of the top midfielders in the Premier League at the moment,” the now departed Lampard told the Liverpool Echo last year.
“My job is to support him, give him confidence, put him in the right structure, in the right team. And the rest is down to him. I have a huge respect for him and love working with him.”
Source: The Punch