Oumar Niasse might not be Everton's answer - but striker deserves more than cult hero cliché
If ever a goal typified a player, it was Oumar Niasse’s effort against Watford.
It was a goal that was defined by its perseverence, its desire, its unlikelihood. Those are three words very much associated with the Senegalese forward.
His story at Everton is well-known and often told; so cliché, it would be rejected as a script for being too unrealistic.
Perhaps it is time to rewrite the narrative.
Niasse’s best qualities, undoubtedly, come from the emotion he elicits when watching him. He will never win personal awards, nor will he often appear on an end-of-season highlight reel, but he makes the crowd feel.
The Gwladys Street, where he has scored all five of his goals in blue so far, fizzes when he is near the ball; not because of what he can do, but what he intends to do. Sometimes – especially during moments like these recent ones – that is all can be asked for.
In times of strife, cult heroes emerge, and Niasse has solidified his status as one.
But he might be proving himself to be more than just that.
Consider this: his goal against the Hornets was his fifth of the season, in just eight appearances, his 15th in his Everton career so far.
That is an average of one goal every three games, and his ratio is even more impressive when accounting for the minutes he’s actually played. When wearing blue this season – for both the senior side, and the Under-23s, with whom he scored three goals – he finds the back of the net every 63 minutes.
Compare that to other strikers of Niasse’s ilk; figures either popular, or those who struggled to justify their status and fee.
Denis Stracqualursi, the beanpole Argentine, scored three in 28; Apostolos Vellios also notched three, but did so in 25.
The more established stars, Arouna Kone and Daniel Amokachi, bagged 10 and 14 respectively; but the Ivorian made 62 appearances for the Blues, with terrace hero Amokachi making 54.
The memories of Niasse’s ill-fated first year at Goodison still linger; it seemed destined Niasse would leave as the butt of all jokes; snapshots of of his miskicks and miscontrol playing on a Twitter loop for your viewing displeasure.
Who’s laughing now?
Since moving to Hull on loan last season, he has scored nine goals in 27 appearances, highlighting how this is not simply a hot streak, a bizarre but welcome distraction to Everton’s problems elsewhere.
Despite the song from the famous old stadium, Niasse might not be the answer. Certainly not in the long-term.
But he’s serving as more than just a cult hero right now. His record suggests he knows where the net is too – even if it results in him falling into it along with the ball.
After being told for so long he wanted needed by Everton, Everton might need him for a little while longer ahead of a gruelling few months.
some videos on the site to do with Niasse, but the Echo site fucking sucks.
link to original article. http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/oumar-niasse-might-not-evertons-13872321