By Owen Smith
Winger Demarai Gray signed for The Toffee’s this season for £1.7 million – could this be one of the most successful bargains of the season?
With seven appearances and three goals, Gray has started the season with a strong contribution to the side.
Vital goals against Leeds, Burnley and Brighton have seen Everton undefeated in any game the winger has scored in.
His assist against Manchester United also saw Everton snatch a huge point away from home at Old Trafford, bringing him to four total goal contributions in the league this season.
After Gray struggled to get into the team at Leicester City, he was sold to Bayern Leverkusen, where he signed a one-and-a-half year contract, until 2022.
He fell out of the rotation due to Rodgers simply not favouring him as a player.
His spell at Leverkusen was brief, with 12 appearances in all competitions, and three total goal contributions.
The stats from his previous clubs make it obvious how much he has improved since moving to Everton.
Within seven matches, he has surpassed his total tally at Leverkusen, and only scored more goals in one season for Leicester, in which he appeared 34 times in the league.
At 25, the young English winger has plenty to offer and has the potential to become a pivotal part in Everton’s future goals.
Gray has claimed his run of form comes down to the belief injected from boss Rafa Benitez, who was contacting him before he even became Everton manager.
He told EvertonTV: “I have a manager here and a team that believe in me and give me the freedom to express myself.
“I’m enjoying my football again. Everything’s clicked well here. I just want to keep working hard to maintain my level and keep improving.”
(Image courtesy of Everton FC)