A New And Unexpected Opportunity
Oumar Niasse has definitely come in from the cold this season so could he yet have an Everton future, which didn't seem at all possible.
As is well documented, Niasse wasn't even handed a squad number last season and was banished from the first team to the U23s - eventually being loaned to Hull.
He was back in the fold for pre-season and did get handed a squad number, not that the Senegalese forward was expected to feature much under Ronald Koeman, if at all. Had a transfer deadline move to Crystal Palace not fallen through he would have left in the summer.
Niasse marked his return to the side with his first goal for the club in the League Cup win - probably the one and only competition most would have expected him to be involved in - over Sunderland last week.
Koeman turned to him again against Bournemouth and he came up trumps with a brace to turn the game around and hand the Blues a much needed win - there's no grudge held against anyone at Goodison Park and he'll just keep working hard.
'It was a difficult time for me but I wouldn't say anything against anyone here or against the team He [Koeman] just said this was a new opportunity for me. I didn't want to go over the past with him. There is nothing to say about that. He said [last year] I wasn't ready and maybe I wasn't ready. I went away, I learned and I have come back stronger,' Niasse told Sky Sports.
Adding: 'Even if I wasn't on the pitch for every game or was with the U23s I was running on the pitch like a dog. I tried just to keep my head on me, to not lose it, and the best way to do that is to just keep working hard.'
He went on to talk about the continued faith he has in having a long-term future, in fact had, and isn't concerned by the potential arrival of another forward at Goodison in January as this added competition for places is needed.
Koeman was full of praise for Niasse following his match winning performance and continued this when speaking again earlier this week.
'The first goal was perfect. First he was defending and getting the ball back, he played a one-two, then he was running, his movement was good… and his finish was great,' the boss told the Official Website.
'It is an incredible story that he scored the two goals. All the credit is to him. He was waiting a long time for first-team opportunities. He showed it last Wednesday and then did it again, because he gave the team the boost we needed at 1-0 down.'
Well, he's taken his chance, we can't ask much more than that. How long will his run in the side go on? The more goals he scores in the chances he's given the better the future looks for him.
However, in all honesty it wouldn't be a surprise if he still moved on in January.