‘James Rodriguez still adjusting to relentless Premier League pace’ – Everton star will be ‘fine’, says Campbell

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James Rodriguez Everton 2020-21Getty Images

James Rodriguez is still adjusting to the “relentless” pace of Premier League life, says Kevin Campbell, with the Colombian being backed to “find his feet” and produce on a consistent basis once up to full match sharpness.

The talented South American has made a positive early impression in England since completing a move to Goodison Park over the summer.

His ability has never been in doubt, with the 29-year-old having previously turned out for the likes of Monaco, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

Everton were considered to have pulled off quite the coup in luring him to Merseyside, with the presence of Carlo Ancelotti in their dugout proving to be a useful bargaining tool.

James has shown flashes of what he is capable of, with three goals and four assists already recorded.

He has, however, also picked up a slight knock in the midst of Premier League battle, with the English top-flight renowned for its physicality.

It was suggested on the back of Everton’s 2-0 defeat to Southampton last time out that James was looking a little tired – with regular game time having been in short supply for him over recent years.

Campbell, though, believes James is merely working his way through the gears and will prove to be a shrewd addition for the Toffees even in the most testing of times.

The former Everton striker told Gentingbet: “Rodriguez will be fine once he gets used to the relentless nature of the Premier League.

“He hasn’t played a lot of football over the years so I think he's just got to find his feet. I truly believe he will - he just needs all the top players playing for him to really excel.

“Obviously, there's a few players who aren't going to be there, so it’s going to take him a little bit of time to adjust.”

Everton’s loss at Southampton was their first in 2020-21, with a flying start made to their Premier League campaign. Campbell believes James and Co. will face another stern test of their credentials when paying a visit to Newcastle on Sunday.

He added: “Everton’s game against Newcastle is going to be very difficult.

“Lucas Digne won’t be playing as he's got a one-game suspension and Richarlison will be missing for the second game.

“I think Everton will find going to St James’ Park very difficult because obviously, it’s away from home and you haven't got Richarlison - you only realise the work and players he occupies when he isn’t there, and that he gets players away from Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

“When he’s not playing, other teams will be scheming towards Calvert-Lewin to stop him so I think it’s going to be a very difficult game for Everton.”