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Tuesday 03 September 2013

On this day in 1999: Everton sign Xavier

Looking back at Premier League history, we recall a colourful defender moving to Goodison Park

  • Abel Xavier made his debut for Everton against West Ham United

  • He made 43 appearances for Everton before joining Liverpool in 2002

  • Xavier celebrating with Alan Stubbs just before his move

Premierleague.com rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.

On this day: 3 September 1999 - Xavier joins Everton

Abel Xavier became Everton’s fourth signing of the summer when the right-back joined Walter Smith’s Toffees from PSV Eindhoven.

The 26-year-old, who had also played for the likes of Benfica and Real Oviedo, signed a three-year deal and was delighted to play in the Barclays Premier League.

"It has always been in my mind to play in England,” he said. “The crowds and the atmosphere when you're playing at the top level is a situation you want to be in. Everton is a big, traditional club and I promise I'm going to do my best.”

Xavier, whose hair and beard made him stand out, became one of the most colourful players in the top flight and made 43 appearances for the club before he became the fourth player to switch from Everton to Liverpool when he was signed by Gerard Houllier in January 2002.

He struggled to hold down a first-team place at Anfield and left the club in 2003 but that was not the end of his career in England as he had spell with Middlesbrough in 2006-07.

Xavier made a total of 71 appearances in the Barclays Premier League, scoring two goals.

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Key Points

  • Premierleague.com looks back through the annals of history of the competition
  • A memorable event or match from each day of the year will be selected
  • We remember when a colourful defender moved to Merseyside