Nigeria footballer , Alex Iwobi, has been listed among Premier League’s most-improved players in the ongoing season.
Other players listed are are Miguel Almiron, Eric Dier, Diogo Dalot, Joelinton, Ivan Toney, Fabian Schar, Gabriel Martinelli, Eberechi Eze and Granit Xhaka.
Formerly ostracised by Carlo Ancelotti and Rafa Benitez at Goodison Park, Iwobi appeared to have amounted to nothing more than a utility player at Everton.
The Nigerian had managed only four Premier League goals in three seasons having joined from Arsenal as a forward player in a deal worth £34m including add-ons.
This season, however, Iwobi has looked a player reborn under Lampard. Indeed, it is form carrying over from the end of the last campaign when he was one of the standout performers in the club’s march to safety.
But since earning regular starts under Frank Lampard, the Nigerian has emerged as a pivotal part of the Toffees’ system this season, offering an abundance of energy in midfield and has been involved in over 50 per cent of the Toffees goals so far.
He has also racked up five assists in the currently campaign.
No longer a winger or playmaker, Iwobi is now viewed as a hard-working, box-to-box midfielder under Lampard and has helped Everton climb to 11th in the table.
Iwobi’s hard-working role in the engine room has helped boost Everton’s defensive record
The 26-year-old, who is tasked with breaking up play and tracking runners in midfield, has contributed to the Toffees’ superb defensive record so far this season, which is the best among teams outside the top five (Arsenal, Man City, Spurs, Newcastle and Chelsea).
Attributing Iwobi’s resurgence to Lampard’s belief in him, team-mate Andros Townsend said: ‘Rafa used to have this fitness test and Alex was always the fittest. But he didn’t believe it.
“It was only when Frank Lampard came in and said “I believe in you”. Now you’re starting to see Alex as the specimen he is.”