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Manny is happy to be back at Goodison, but will the fans welcome him?

Manuel Fernandes, the biggest “what if” of Everton’s unpredictable pre-season of wheeling and dealing, has come clean about the controversial weekend when he appeared to agree to sign for Everton, only to waltz off to Valencia.

The poor lamb had a torrid time in Spain and as well as playing for Valencia, La Liga’s train-wreck of the season, he also managed to get himself in the slammer for apparently nicking someone’s watch in a Valencia nightclub(!). Judging from last season’s testimony, Fernandes has a pathological hatred of the cold, so Moyes can rest assured that he won’t be trying any nightclub japery on Merseyside – it’ll be too bloody cold for the Portuguese to leave the house.

Fernandes said of his move to Valencia:

“I heard stories I wanted to leave but that is not true,” Fernandes told the club’s official website.

“If that was the case I wouldn’t have come back now. It was difficult with a club and a group owning me – that was the difficult part in the negotiations but the important thing now is that I am back.”

And in case there are any Evertonians considering booing the young lad, he threw out some praise for the blue half of Merseyside, even talking of third place(!) :

“I hope we can consolidate fourth place. It will be difficult to get up to third but we want to stay as high as possible.

“I think this is a good move. Permanent would be better but I will enjoy it for six months. The togetherness there is here is the kind of thing I have not seen in many clubs. That is the real strength of this team.”

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