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Koeman: I spoke to this Everton midfielder after poor Middlesbrough display

By Dominic Toner

Ronald Koeman has admitted he spoke to Everton midfielder Idrissa Gueye after his performance against Middlesbrough.

The Toffees manager felt that the 27-year-old was still tired after his return from the Africa Cup of Nations and has failed to rediscover his best form.

The central midfielder started the goalless draw against Boro in the Premier League, but was withdrawn in the 62nd minute.

Koeman revealed he spoke to Gueye after his Boro display and feels he is now back to his best.

“I wasn’t happy with his performance against Middlesbrough and I spoke to Gana who said he was still a little bit tired from the African Cup,” Koeman said, as quoted by the club’s official website. “But what I saw from Gana last week and this week is that he is at the level we expect and what he saw from him at the beginning of the season. He’s back and that’s important for the team.”

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Gueye will hope to be involved in the starting XI on Saturday when Everton host Sunderland in the league.

The Senegal international moved to Goodison Park in the summer from Aston Villa and has been a great success.

The combative midfielder is often compared to N’Golo Kante and has the same style.

He was lauded by supporters in the first half of the season for his impact and will now be desperate to return to his best.

In other Everton news, Paul Merson has given his prediction for the clash against Sunderland.

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