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Benitez told me I wasn’t good enough – Iwobi

Alex Iwobi of the Super Eagles has revealed that former Everton manager Rafael Benitez told him he wasn’t good enough for the Toffees during the previous season and urged him to quit Goodison Park.

But Frank Lampard’s arrival helped change his career, and he is now a crucial member of the group.

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Iwobi had trouble getting on the field under Benitez, who advised him to leave in the January transfer window if he wanted to play.Information Guide Nigeria

“He told me I should leave Everton. I said I’d rather stay and fight for my place, and take my chances when they come. I was told by him that I wasn’t good enough, but I wanted to stay and showcase my ability. I’m delighted I have done that,” Iwobi told Liverpool Echo.

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“It felt like everyone wanted me to go,” Iwobi claimed. “They said, ‘If you want to play football, you would be better off on loan’. It was like, ‘You are not in our plans, try to prove yourself elsewhere. I said I would rather take my chances and stay. I felt I had something to give and wanted to show my ability.”

As he fell out of favor with Benitez, the Nigerian made just five starts and four appearances as a late substitute by the start of November. During the months preceding Lampard’s arrival, former Arsenal player Alex Iwobi was frequently criticized as the Toffees struggled.

“I can deal with negativity much better now that I have grown up,” Iwobi said. “When I was younger, I didn’t know how to handle those things. I completely switched off from football, I want my own space and thoughts, I don’t like to talk or have someone telling me what to do.

“I probably shouldn’t be saying this. but I would play football with my friends, especially when I wasn’t in the team. Little games, maybe twice a week, just to enjoy it. I never lost my love for football, even though I saw all the negativity.”

The former Arsenal playmaker has suddenly converted into a confident, dynamic midfielder for Lampard, and is currently among the club’s top performances week after week.JAMB Result

This season, the 26-year-old has played a key role, providing five assists in 14 league games.

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Emediong Silver

Emediong Ekpe is a graduate of English. A professional Sports journalist/analyst, and a spoken word artist. He is passionate about decimating information and putting smiles on people's faces via news writing.

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