Gerard Deulofeu wants more first-team opportunities at Everton
Gerard Deulofeu has revealed that he has asked Everton manager Roberto Martinez for further first-team football in a bid to accelerate his development.
The promising Spanish forward returned to the club on a permanent basis from Barcelona during the summer having impressed while on loan during the 2013/14 season and he was a peripheral figure during a loan spell at Sevilla last season.
His arrival is among the reasons there is again optimism surrounding Everton's prospects - the potential for a long-term partnership forming between the Spaniard and Ross Barkley is particularly promising - and Deulofeu hopes that his winning goal in their recent 2-1 Capital One Cup defeat of Reading will prove the catalyst for a regular starting position.
"The manager had told me to be calm, that it is a long season and there will be a lot of opportunities to play," said Deulofeu ahead of Everton's Premier League fixture at West Brom on Monday evening.
"I have told him that I want to play now and I hope that I can play a lot more and help the team.
"This is my third professional season: a year in Everton, last year at Sevilla and now back here. I need to be a first-team player. I need to play a lot of games and feel important to a team. If you have a lot of confidence, I believe everything will be fine."
Deulofeu was once so highly thought of at Barcelona that he was expected to progress into their first team but even if those expectations proved beyond him, he believes he is at the right club to progress.
"The last three months in Sevilla I did not play a single game but my physical shape is good and I am ready to play whenever I am needed.
"I am so happy to be back here. One of the most important reasons for coming back was that I had been so happy here during the year I had on loan. I felt at home here, very comfortable.
"I am very happy with the goal against Reading. The goalkeeper did not attack it especially well but what is important is to score and help the team.
"It is great for my confidence too. I need to play more minutes. I want to play more minutes. This, for me, is very important. I find it hard to be on the bench. Like all players, I do not like being a substitute. But I have to wait for my chance and try to take it when it comes."