Former Everton prospect says attitude problems cost him success at club, doesn't blame managers

Francisco Junior admits that if he had been "100% professional all the time" then things may have turned out differently for him at Goodison Park.

Former Everton flop Francisco Junior has told the Liverpool Echo that his failure to apply himself properly off the pitch is the main reason that his career at Goodison Park turned into a nightmare.

The ex-Portugal youth international arrived on Merseyside from Benfica with big billing in 2012, being tipped as a bright star of the future in European football.

However, he ultimately made just a single appearance for the club, a League Cup tie with Leeds United in which he was taken off at half-time.

The 24-year-old told the Echo that he does not hold any grudge against David Moyes or Roberto Martinez for his lack of playing time at the Toffees and admits that he only has himself to blame for his career at Goodison Park not working out.

He said: "I don’t have to blame Moyes, I don’t have to blame Martinez, I don’t have to blame anyone, I just have to blame myself, because if I was professional 100%, it would have worked out better.”

"Things happened. Most of them were my mistakes and my fault. When I came to Everton I was doing very, very well and waiting for my chance. It didn’t depend on me, if the manager didn’t want to give me a chance then he was never going to give me it.

"But for the manager it didn’t always matter what I was doing on the pitch, but what I was doing off it. I was doing whatever I wanted. Before this, I didn’t drink alcohol, I didn’t go out and when I lost my head I had nobody to support me. That is one of the reasons why I didn’t make it at Everton."

During his four years at Everton, Junior spent time on loan at Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem, Stromsgodset in Norway, Port Vale and Wigan Athletic, impressing at the latter in the first half of this season.

However, after scoring once in 12 appearances in all competitions, his time at the Latics was cut short by a groin injury, and he completed a permanent move to his former Norwegian side last month.


Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch