Kevin Phillips claimed Alex Iwobi failed to take his opportunity for Everton last weekend in the absence of the “outstanding” Richarlison.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, the former England international said that “a few eyebrows were raised” when the Toffees signed the 24-year-old from Arsenal last year for an initial £28m.
Iwobi made his first Premier League start of the campaign on Sunday as Carlo Ancelotti’s side’s unbeaten run came to at Southampton.
However, the Nigeria international, standing in for the suspended Richarlison, was hauled off at half-time having failed to make a meaningful impact on the game.
Phillips questioned what the attacking midfielder’s best position is.
“It has not happened for him at Everton,” he told Football Insider.
“I have to say that a few eyebrows were raised when he did sign for Everton. Certainly from people that I know that support Arsenal, they were surprised by the amount of money Everton signed him for.
“It has not worked out for him and I still do not know what his best position is. He is one of those players where he will probably retire and you look back and ask, ‘What was his best position?’
“To try and replace Richarlison, who has been outstanding this season, is always going to be difficult. He had his opportunity at Southampton and the fact that he was brought off at half time suggests that he failed to do that.
“He could quite easily find himself sitting on the bench for the majority of this season.”
In other Everton news, Paul Robinson questions the attitude of 20-year-old attacker after dazzling display.