I’m glad I snubbed Palace to join ‘legend’ Rooney at Everton – Cenk Tosun

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The hitman has found his touch of late by scoring four times in three games and is delighted his patience has paid off

Everton striker Cenk Tosun is pleased that he played the waiting game in order to join the right Premier League side for him.

The 26-year-old started the season at Besiktas but had the opportunity to join Crystal Palace early in the campaign.

A move never materialised, though, and instead the Turkey international was transferred to Everton in January for £27 million.

“Crystal Palace wanted to sign me during the first phase of the season but it couldn't happen. I'm glad it didn't because I now play for a bigger club in the Premier League,” he told TRT Spor.

After a slow start to life in England, he has four goals in his last three appearances and he has pinpointed Wayne Rooney as a particularly strong influence on him thus far.

“Players like Rooney, Phil Jagielka and Seamus Coleman have given me a helping hand to settle in,” he said. “I want to emphasise Rooney. He's a legend in the UK but he's far from being arrogant. I admire him on and off the pitch.”

Meanwhile, he has explained why he was willing to leave Turkey, despite a Champions League knockout match with Bayern on the horizon.

“I love Besiktas but I had to set new career goals for myself. That's why I wanted to play in the Premier League,” he explained.

“The Premier League is as good as people say. It's the NBA of football world. It's the fastest, toughest football league in the world where the most expensive players play. I had always wanted to play in the EPL since I was a little child.”

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Indeed, his poor start to life in England led to rumours of a rapid return to Turkey, but he has batted these away.

“I want to stay in England,” he said. “Everton is a great club with tradition. We should play in the European competitions every year. I want to play in the European competitions with an Everton shirt.”

Cenk was twice on target on Saturday as Everton secured a 2-1 win at Stoke, with Manchester City next on the cards for Sam Allardyce’s side.

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