Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti has claimed his midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure is worthy of a place in the France national team, as reported by the Liverpool Echo.
Having arrived from Watford in the summer, Doucoure has been a mainstay in the Everton midfield this season.
Everton’s rock in midfield
He has started every game, helping the side into fifth place in the table. Ancelotti admits he didn’t realise just how good Doucoure was. However, he’s now convinced the 27-year-old can go to the very top of the game.
The Italian said: “I didn’t know him as well as what I have seen this season.
Speaking ahead of this weekend’s game against Arsenal, the Italian said: “I think he is one of the best French midfielders around and I think he can go to the national team.”
Doucoure steps up
The Toffees have had to cope with injuries in the midfield this season. James Rodriguez, Allan and Fabian Delph have all missed games due to fitness issues.
This has meant Doucoure has had to step up in their absence. He has managed that, and Ancelotti has been delighted with the midfielder’s adaptability.
Ancelotti said: “The skills Doucoure has, he can play everywhere on the pitch.
“He can play in the ten, in behind, in front of the defence.”
Everton trio to miss out
Doucoure will be required to produce another big performance on Saturday, with Rodriguez, Allan and Delph all ruled out again.
However, Everton captain Seamus Coleman is fit to return. The experienced full-back has missed the past five matches with a hamstring problem.
Everton will hope to build on an impressive week that has seen them register wins over Chelsea and Leicester City.
They currently sit five points behind leaders and rivals Liverpool.
Another win would maintain momentum ahead of Everton’s Carabao Cup quarter-final with Manchester United on Wednesday.