Everton broke their ‘highest fee for a player’ record, signing Romelu Lukaku for a mega £28 million fee. Everton’s transfer business isn’t done though, the Toffees have confirmed the signing of MK Dons midfielder Brendan Galloway, and it looks like Christian Atsu will join Everton on a season-long loan from Chelsea. Who is Atsu? What are his strengths and weaknesses? Is he capable of getting into the Everton team?
Who is Christian Atsu?
Atsu is a 22-year-old winger and central attacking midfielder who plays his football for Chelsea. The Ghanian international joined Chelsea from FC Porto on deadline day 2013, after spending 2 years in Portugal. Atsu went straight out on loan to Vitesse on the same day, and is now back at Chelsea but is likely to go out on loan for a second time.
What does he provide?
Pace. Atsu is very, very fast. Coming of the bench with 20 minutes to go, he could provide a lot of energy to the game. He also has a very good finish from close range and has created a lot of chances whilst at Vitesse.
Passing and Creating Chances
Atsu achieved an 86% passing accuracy last season at Vitesse, with 891 of his passes last season reaching a Vitesse player out of 1,038 attempted passes within 27 appearances.
The winger created 54 chances whilst playing for Vitesse, only Kevin Mirallas had more in the Everton team (61). 38.9% of Atsu’s chances he created were on the right wing, whilst 24.1% were inside the area and 16.7% were outside of the area.
Christian Atsu scored 5 goals last season, but was still adventurous with his shooting, with 51 shots at goal. 28 of his shots were on target whilst 23 of his shots where off target. Maybe he isn’t the most reliable at shooting with his 57% shot accuracy. However, the amount of chances he can create could be very important for Everton.
One thing is for certain about Christian Atsu, he is very fast. Atsu had one of the highest recorded speeds at this year’s World Cup, reaching a top speed of 30.3km/h, which was third highest recorded, Everton’s newest midfielder Muhamed Besic had the second highest record speed with 31.2km/h! His pace can be used down either wing, and he could create a lot of chances for Romelu Lukaku or whoever is upfront!
For me he isn’t a first team player yet. He hasn’t played in the Premier League, so I am certain that he will be making a few sub appearances at the start of the season rather than go into the first team straight away. He has the potential to become a fantastic winger at the club, and will provide a lot of competition for whoever plays on left or right mid. He will improve at Everton.