Friday 20 January 2012

Anichebe: Blackburn will miss Yakubu

Everton star believes Rovers are less of a threat because of banned striker

Yakubu and Victor Anichebe played up front together at Everton before Yakubu left the club

Everton striker Victor Anichebe says Saturday's Barclays Premier League opponents Blackburn Rovers will miss the goalscoring threat of Yakubu.

Yakubu played alongside Anichebe for Everton before leaving the Toffees for Ewood Park on transfer deadline day in August.

The Nigerian has since scored an impressive 12 Barclays Premier League goals in only 16 matches for Rovers, but he is banned for their trip to Goodison Park after he was sent off against Fulham last weekend.

"Yakubu is a great friend to me so it's sad he's missing the game but it's great for us"
- Victor Anichebe

Anichebe, who has scored twice in his last three League appearances for Everton, knows how crucial Yakubu's absence could prove to be.

"It's a blow for Blackburn, but it's great for us," Anichebe told Everton's official website (evertonfc.com). "Yak's been in great form this season.

"He was saying how he was looking forward to coming back and playing against us. He was saying he was going to bully Sylvain Distin!

"I was talking to him when I was just coming back [from injury] and saying how I wanted to try and emulate him and how he's getting so many goals.

"He's a great friend to me, so it's sad that he's missing the game but it's great for us."

Anichebe, meanwhile, is hoping his terrible injury problems are a thing of the past and he can focus on winning a regular spot in David Moyes' starting XI for Everton.

"My knees are fine, it's just trying to get over all the stuff that's happened to me in the past," he added. "It's not nice being injured.

"The main thing for me is to stay on the pitch. That's what we get paid to do, what our fans come to watch us do, so that's all I want to do now."

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Key Points

  • Anichebe believes Blackburn will miss Yakubu
  • Strike pair used to play together at Everton
  • Anichebe focused on staying free from injury