Oumar Niasse says he does not even have a locker at Everton after seeing his dream move turn into a nightmare.
Niasse was a £13.5million recruit from Lokomotiv Moscow on February 1 this year and the forward signed a four-and-a-half-year deal under former boss Roberto Martinez.
He had scored eight goals in 13 starts in the Russian Premier League and featured in the final two games of last season, but after just one 45-minute appearance in pre-season new boss Ronald Koeman gave him the axe.
The Senegal striker was stripped of his shirt number and he was ordered to train with the club’s under-23 squad and Koeman recently expressed his dismay that Niasse had not left the club.
“Normally, we have enough strikers and different strikers to what he is. I prefer these people and not Niasse in the team.
“That’s a question for the player [why Niasse hasn’t left the club],” Koeman told the Daily Mail last month.
“There was some interest in him but not the interest that he liked to have.
“It is all up to the player whether he doesn’t leave, I can’t understand it, but that is normal.”
In an interview with The Guardian, Niasse has revealed the extent to which he has been ostracised at Goodison Park.
“I’m in the dressing-room with the under-23s but I don’t have a locker,” said Niasse. “The other players have where they put their stuff but I don’t. I come with my bag and I just have a place that I know. I put my bag down, I train and after, I put everything in my car and go home.”
Niasse, who was at the time Everton’s third most expensive player in history behind Romelu Lukaku and Marouane Fellaini says he will “fight” on.
“It’s sad, it’s really sad,” Niasse added. “And, to be honest, I think that I don’t deserve this. But what I can do is just keep my head and fight to change things. I’m not going to make a drama over this. I just deal with it. I know that it’s just one period.”
The Senegal striker, who played in the second half of Koeman’s first game in charge – a 1-0 friendly win over FK Jablonec in July – was hauled into Koeman’s office just 48 hours later.
“Koeman said: ‘You have to leave,’” said Niasse. “I couldn’t understand how that decision could have been made after 45 minutes but I just said: ‘OK, thank you.’ It’s his decision. He’s the manager. What can I do? I called my agent and he said that he would look into the opportunities for me. To be honest, I didn’t ask Koeman to explain his reasons. I just thought, even if I asked why, I would never understand. After just 45 minutes, you cannot say to me: ‘You are no good.’”
Niasse has since had one further conversation with Koeman: “He changed everything,” said Niasse. “He took my shirt number and he told me I wasn’t allowed to be in the dressing room for the first team; that I wasn’t going to train with them. I had to go with the second team.
“I said: ‘OK, no problem.’ When you say you don’t need a player, you don’t have to see him. I’ve just kept working in training. Even if I’m training with the under-23s, I give them the respect.
“I’m just thinking about what I have to do. If, at any time, Everton need me – for the 23s or the first-team – I will be there, because I work for Everton.
“They paid a lot of money for me and that’s why I feel I have to show something. People say what they think but they don’t know me in England. They have never seen me fit and playing.
“I want to show myself in the Premier League and I hope it can be at Everton, because it’s the team that I’m feeling. Every weekend, I’m watching the games, I’m supporting the team, I’m behind them.
“I’m a blue. But, if I get the opportunity to show what I can do at another Premier League team, I will go and I will do it. You never know what can happen. This is football.”