Everton’s Alex Iwobi has revealed that the manager’s decision to hand him the role directly behind striker Richarlison and a few tips and tricks from Marcos Silva played a huge part in helping the hosts secure their first win in five matches.
The Super Eagles playmaker was a constant thorn in the flesh of the Hammers all afternoon as Everton broke a run of poor results to post a pleasing 2-0 win at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Suffering from a string of consecutive losses and potentially facing the sack in the event of another loss, Everton boss Marcos Silva rang in the chances and was rewarded beautifully as his charges condemned highflying West Ham to a rare defeat.
Among the changes effected by Silva was the surprise positioning of winger Alex Iwobi in the number ten role while relegating Gylfi Sigurdsson to the bench.
Iwobi, starting his fourth league match for Everton, shone like a million stars as he drove the home side forward on several waves of attack. The former Arsenal forward has however revealed that the manager’s decision to play him in his favourite position had a huge bearing on his overall performance.
“The manager told me try to get the team going forward as quickly as possible but also keep the ball and create chances and I felt I would be able to do that,” Iwobi told Everton TV as monitored by Soccernet.ng.
“That position is where I have grown up playing and where I feel most comfortable.
“I will play wherever I am told to but I really enjoyed it today.”
Bernard, who gave Everton a first half lead, and substitute Gylfi Sigurdsson – he rifled into the top corner from 25 yards in stoppage time – were the heroes of the day as the Toffees curbed a run of four straight Premier League defeats.
The victory saw Everton climb four places to 14th – out of relegation waters – and within four points of a top-six spot and Iwobi has seen it lift the mood of everyone at the club.
“It was a great team performance and we are all buzzing,” Iwobi added.
“We needed a turning point and I think today is the day.
“The manager told us after the international break that we had to be confident, to not feel any sort of pressure.
“He said, ‘Just play and express yourselves and be free’.
“We took that into training… and you can see from the players today, we were able to do that in the match.”