Jordan Pickford’s new contract is a ‘statement of intent’ according to CaughtOffside journalist and Evertonian Matthew Smith.
The Toffees number one put pen to paper in a four-and-a-half year deal, leaving supporters of the club thrilled due to the reported interest of clubs like Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur.
Smith said: “It’s massive, it’s a statement of intent and hopefully it will trigger other players to follow suit rather than jumping ship to go and sit on the bench of another club.
“Not just for Pickford’s ability on the pitch, but he’s clearly a leader.
“He’s regularly selected as captain when Seamus Coleman is absent and Gareth Southgate is constantly praising England’s number one even if he has a small blip in form.”
✍️ | Jordan Pickford has signed a new four-and-a-half-year contract, committing his future to Everton until the end of June 2027.
— Everton (@Everton) February 24, 2023
The 28-year-old joined Everton from Sunderland in 2017 where he’s been able to make an impressive 202 appearances for The Toffees and has earned himself 50 caps for England.
He was able to win the Everton’s player of the year award last season due to his key involvement in keeping the Merseyside club in the top division for another season.
The goalkeeper has also been an essential player for Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions, having kept the most clean sheets out of any keeper in Euro 2020 and the World Cup 2022.
CaughtOffside writer Smith has been left ‘delighted for a number of reasons’ following the new deal.
“The emotional, passionate, Everton fan in me is happy to see one of our key players commit to the club long-term,” he said.
“The other side is the fact that he was out of contract next summer.
“We now protect his value and if a big club wants to come and sign him, no problem but you’ll have to pay a big, big fee.”
Smith was ‘slightly surprised’ Pickford decided to put pen to paper when there were rumours other clubs in the league wanted to acquire the goalkeeper’s services.
“If Pickford wants to leave then not signing the deal gives him an excellent chance of leaving this summer,” he said.
“It’s rare that multiple clubs are in need of a goalkeeper, but I expect Tottenham, Manchester United and maybe even Chelsea to be looking for a new number one this summer, so it was a great chance for him to get a move.”
Ahead of their Premier League clash against Aston Villa, Everton manager Sean Dyche hailed the move to secure Pickford’s future at the club.
He said: “He’s a very good player, we know that, and a good servant to this club so far as well and he is going to continue to be that I’m sure.
“I think it’s a sign he’s enjoying the new regime.
“I think he’s accepting on what we’re looking to offer, and I know he’s been a fantastic player, so we want him to continue that and anyway we can rub off on him and help him to continue his development.”
Sean Dyche was asked about reports of a new deal for Jordan Pickford.
— Everton (@Everton) February 23, 2023
Everton are currently sitting 16th in the league, one point ahead of the relegation zone and will be hoping Pickford can help the team secure their top-flight status for another season.