Everton have announced the signing of Aston Villa winger Anwar El Ghazi on loan for the rest of the season.
The 26-year-old Dutchman becomes the third new recruit for the Toffees in the current transfer window, following the arrivals of full-backs Vitalii Mykolenko and Nathan Patterson on permanent deals.
El Ghazi told evertontv: “I’m really excited. Everton is a big club, I cannot wait to get started.
“I want to show my quality to my teammates, to the club and, of course, the fans. I want to put a smile on their faces. I’m ready and willing to work hard for it and for all of us to work together.
“I just want to focus on working hard, getting into the team, fighting for my place and, with the boys, to get Everton where it belongs – that is much higher up the table. We have a really good squad.”
Everton – currently 15th in the Premier League table – confirmed the El Ghazi transfer hours after it was announced left-back Lucas Digne had departed the club to sign for Villa.
El Ghazi joined the midlands outfit on loan from Lille in the summer of 2018, with the switch then being made permanent a year later after he had helped Villa gain promotion via the Championship play-offs, scoring in the final.
He has since made 71 Premier League appearances, registering 15 goals, including the winner in a 2-1 victory at Everton in May 2021.
El Ghazi – holder of two Holland caps – added: “I can always score a goal in an important moment. I can add a lot of value with my pace and technique going forward. I can hold the ball and I am decent in one-on-ones. I am ready and can’t wait.
“If I can score goals like the one I scored against Everton, for Everton now, then I will be a happy man.
“I will work hard and give everything I have. That is the least you can expect from a player. That is what I will start with and from there hopefully I will be able to score goals and give assists.”
El Ghazi could make his Everton debut when Rafael Benitez’s men face Norwich away on Saturday.