Following Everton’s big-money capture of Jordan Pickford earlier this month, I got the views of Eve Sayers – from the Sunderland Fanzine A Love Supreme – to get her thoughts on the young English goalkeeper.
Firstly, how gutted are you to see Jordan Pickford leave and do you think if Sunderland had stayed up you may have kept him?
Obviously it’s a huge blow to see Pickford go, he’s Sunderland through and through and a huge talent but given the circumstances, the move was best for both him and Sunderland. Financially, we aren’t in the position to turn down £30million for any player and Pickford himself deserves the chance to be able to go on and win trophies, playing in Europe etc. If we had stayed up, who knows if things may have been different. We aren’t able to compete with Everton so it still would have been a tempting offer for him, I guess it depends on what position we finished in and how things were looking for the future but I don’t think things would have made too much difference.
Were any other clubs in for him?
Apparently City we’re interested but they bought Ederson so that ruled out their move for Pickford. Arsenal were also linked but nothing came of it.
Do you think Everton was a smart move for him?
It’s one of the best moves he could have made. In terms of fans, Everton are pretty similar to Sunderland, we’re both grounded but extremely loyal and turn up in our numbers. The club itself is on the up and Koeman is a great manager who will undoubtedly help to get the best out of Pickford. Playing in Europe will be a massive opportunity for Pickford and he’ll also get game time which may not have been the case should he moved to a club like City.
At a fee of potentially £30 million, Is he worth the money that Everton paid for him?
Definitely. He will be England’s number one, one day, I don’t care what anyone says. He’s a fantastic keeper and the best I’ve seen play for Sunderland. His distribution is also unreal and aside from Defoe, he was probably our main attacking threat last season! It’s a shame Lukaku looks to be off because I’m sure he could fire some great long balls to him.
What are the best features of Pickford’s game?
Going back to my last question, definitely his distribution. His aim and precision is second to none, I don’t know how he does it. He’s also great at commanding his box and did well behind a pretty naff defence last season.
Does he have any weaknesses?
In short, no. I can’t remember him making too many mistakes for us aside from one at Southampton away which unfortunately led to their goal. Obviously, it wasn’t his first mistake and won’t be his last but it certainly will never be a regular occurrence.
In terms of his character and personality, what type of player is he like to have at the Club?
Like I said, he’s Sunderland through and through, he loves his football so will fit in perfectly at a club like Everton. He’s down to earth and works hard. He’s passionate and that’s what you want.
Can you see Pickford becoming England’s number one goalkeeper?
Without a doubt, he’s the best English keeper.
If you had to compare him to any other keeper in the Premier League era who would it be?
I’m not sure he is comparable to anyone, he’s completely unique. Like Chris Kirkland said, “I have never ever seen anybody kick a ball like he does”.
Whilst I’ve got you here, what are your thoughts on David Moyes?
He’s pathetic. He failed at United, he failed at Real Sociedad and he failed at Sunderland. He took the Champions first 1st to 7th, took Sociedad from 4th to 15th and took us down. However, rather than admit his failings, he will still harp on about his fourth best win record in the Premier League. He’s the worst manager I’ve ever seen at the club. His negativity drained the life out the fans and players, he lost the dressing room and he lost the fans. He’s a sorry excuse for a manager and should have done the honourable thing by walking away months ago.
You ended up with a load of our former players last season, can any of them hold their heads up high during their short times in the North East?
Nope. Darron Gibson is possibly one of the slowest players I’ve ever seen, at any level, ever. Steven Pienaar is a walking sick note, as is Victor Anichebe. Joelon Lescott should pay rent in the physio room and was the biggest waste of a wage ever. Bryan Oviedo was on par with Patrick van Aanholt who is also a terrible left-back and the fact that he wants a Premier League move is hilarious.
Big thanks to Eve for giving me her views.