Mikel dismisses EPL return with Everton

Mikel dismisses EPL return with Everton

Nigeria international midfielder John Obi Mikel has denied reports that he could be on his way for a Premier League return in January.

The former Chelsea playmaker Mikel has been linked with a move back to the English top flight with Everton believed to be the most admirers in the chase.

Mikel left for the Chinese Super League side Tianjin TEDA earlier in the year after 11 years at Stamford Bridge during which he won 11 trophies including two Premier League, four FA Cup and one Champions League.

Since his arrival, the 190,000 pounds-a-week star has retained a regular shirt for the giants, having racked up 13 league appearances with a goal to his name.

Everton looks to reinforce their midfield ahead of a tough January fixtures with head coach Sam Allardyce reportedly ready to flush out players who remain as surplus requirements at Goodison Park.

Allardyce has brought back the Toffees back to a new lease of life since he took charge of the bench last month after the sacking of Ronald Koeman following a run of poor results that left the Meyerside club toddling in the cellar of the table.

And there have been speculations that said the 63-year-old Old Park farm-born tactician is considering a pursuit of Mikel.

But the 30-year-old Jos-born Mikel has now come out to deny the reports claiming the news was baseless and unfounded and he is not considering any move away from TEDA Football Stadium.

“I don’t know where such a rumour came from, but this story is untrue,” the Nigeria international told Tianjin TV.

“I want to stay in the Chinese Super League and play for Teda. I’m sure there will be lots of speculation about me as the transfer window nears but this is a false rumour.”

Mikel who endured an injury-plagued season last term with TEDA featuring for just 13 times has said he is confident he can maintain his fitness levels by remaining in China.

Mikel also remains confident that his chance of representing Nigeria at the 2018 Russian World Cup could only be guaranteed and brightened if he remains with TEDA “Playing in the CSL will help me maintain my status for the World Cup,” he said.

“The standard of the CSL is quite high. Before people might have thought it was slow, but now it’s very quick. I have no doubt playing in this league will help me stay in shape.

“Of course, there is still a gap between the CSL and the English Premier League but the CSL is improving. To play more games will be good and I hope I don’t get injured.”

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