Beckford chooses Toffees challenge

JERMAINE BECKFORD cannot wait to play in the top flight – just four years after plying his trade in non-league football and working as a windscreen fitter.

The former Wealdstone striker has joined Everton on a four-year deal from Leeds after having his contract cancelled.

Beckford, 26, scored 31 goals for Leeds last season, the final one coming on the final day against Bristol Rovers, which clinched promotion from League One.

That took his tally for Leeds to 85 in 150 appearances and caught the eye of Everton manager David Moyes.

After passing a medical at the club’s Finch Farm training complex, Beckford said: “I wish the season was starting tomorrow.

“I’ve been fortunate enough to score goals at the clubs that I’ve been at and hopefully I’ll be able to do that here as well. I hope I can hit the ground running.

“Finch Farm is terrific. It makes such a difference when you’ve got somewhere like this. I can imagine the players coming in here smiling and if you are happy when you are training, it can only be good.”

Beckford is looking forward to pitting his wits against some of the world’s top players. He said: “I am excited. It’s going to be a test but I’m looking forward to it.

“I want to test myself at the highest level and luckily for me, David Moyes showed an interest in me, showed some faith in me and hopefully I can repay that.

“I’ve been impressed a lot by him. He seems like the type of guy who will sit down and tell you where you’re going wrong, what you’re doing right and what you might need to work on.

“It is a club I can learn from and it can help me develop into a better player. Fingers crossed, I can be really involved in taking this club where it wants to be.”

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