TOUGH-man Denis Stracqualursi has got the fighting spirit to earn himself a permanent Everton deal, according to Neville Southall.
Stracqualursi has found form in the second half of the season, scoring three goals since January, and Blues legend Southall is a keen admirer of the Argentinean’s battling qualities.
The 24-year-old is on loan from Tigre until the summer, and Southall believes he has the determination to convince David Moyes to part with the cash for transfer.
He said: “I like him. He’s got a nasty streak and he’ll put his foot in. It was an unknown taking him but he’s starting to show he can do it and could be worth keeping.
“He’s done well in the FA Cup ties particularly and for me the other results have gone in Everton’s favour.
“There’s more pressure on the other clubs in the quarter finals to win it. But there’s no reason why Everton can’t go all the way.
“Because we’ve had not much success for so long people are starting to doubt whether we’ll ever win a competition. It should be the other way. Id much prefer people to be talking about Tim Howard’s team in 10 year’s time than mine because it’d be more relevant.”
Southall was the only Everton player to win the FA Cup twice while at the club, but he says the second time, when he was man of the match in 1995 as Joe Royle’s team triumphed over Manchester United, was the more enjoyable experience.
“It was better for me winning it in 1995 because I knew what was going on,” he said. “I knew it was going to be my last game and I was getting pushed out the door so I didn’t have much to lose.
“I just wanted to play well and leave on a high. The saves I made are ones I expected to make. And to be fair Paul Scholes said he mis-hit his shot anyway.
“We’d just escaped relegation and that was my favourite part of the season when Joe came in. I just thought I’ll do it my way, and enjoy it my way and it was great. I was with Barry who I’d known for ages.
“We were total opposites – he was a night owl, I went to bed early. We’d room together. He used ten times more energy than me on the pitch as well. It suited us that Man United changed their style. We got labelled the Dogs of War but we didn’t play like that in the final, never really thought that quite fit.”