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Alex Iwobi reveals why he left Arsenal to join Everton on deadline day

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Alex Iwobi joined Everton for £34m from Arsenal on transfer deadline day (Picture: Getty)

Alex Iwobi has revealed that his decision to leave Arsenal and join Everton on transfer deadline day was to take on greater responsibility as a player.

The 23-year-old surprisingly made the move late on in the transfer window, joining Everton for a £34m fee and signing a five-year contract with the club.

Iwobi had been at Arsenal since the age of seven and made his first-team breakthrough in 2016 before going on to feature 149 times for the club, scoring 15 goals.

And the Nigeria international has admitted that he is keen to shake off the ‘youngster tag’ he had at Arsenal and embrace a new challenge under Marco Silva at Goodison Park.

Iwobi scored on his final appearance for Arsenal in the Europa League final defeat against Chelsea (Picture: Getty)

Explaining his decision to leave Arsenal, Iwobi said: ‘The offer was too attractive for me to turn down.

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‘The manager was telling me: ‘There is a spot for you, we will take care of you’. Basically, all the things you want to hear as a player.

‘He has given me the confidence I will do well. I am ready for a new challenge and chapter in my life.

‘I always had that youngster tag at Arsenal, so hopefully, with this move I am able to make a name for myself in the Premier League and create history with Everton.

‘Hopefully, I will be able to take on a bit more responsibility and add something to the team as well.’

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Iwobi featured prominently during Unai Emery’s debut season at Arsenal, playing as many matches in the Premier League (35) as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.

However, the arrival of Nicolas Pepe from Lille in a club-record £72m deal threatened to cut his first-team minutes this season, while youngster Reiss Nelson also impressed during pre-season.

Everton, like Arsenal, had made Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha their top target this summer but after seeing a £70m bid plus two players rejected, they moved for Iwobi instead.

The Toffees were active over the summer spending over £100m to sign Iwobi, Moise Kean, Andre Gomes, Jean-Phillipe Gbamin, Fabian Delph and Djibril Sidibe.

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