Former Arsenal academy goalkeeper Joao Virginia made his Premier League debut for Everton this weekend, after an injury to Jordan Pickford.

Everton goalkeeper Joao Virginia after being substituted on to the pitch during the Premier League match at Goodison Park, Liverpool. Picture date: Saturday March 13, 2021. Copyright: Gareth Copley
Everton goalkeeper Joao Virginia after being substituted on to the pitch during the Premier League match at Goodison Park, Liverpool. Picture date: Saturday, March 13, 2021. Copyright: Gareth Copley

After spending a few years with Arsenal, Joao Virginia left the club for Everton in 2018. He spent the first couple of seasons either out on loan or with the Everton u23s, but he’s finally getting close to senior action this season.

In September, Virginia made his debut for the club in an EFL Cup match against Salford City, but that was his only first-team appearance until this weekend.

The 21-year-old was named on the bench for Everton against Burnley, but Jordan Pickford suffered an injury with his side 2-1 down. Virginia came on in his place, completing the remainder of the 90 minutes without conceding.

The goalkeeper made three saves, all from inside the box, and one high claim. Everton lost the match anyway, but Virginia will hope there are more chances for him to come if Pickford is out for an extended period of time.

Writing on Twitter, Virginia said: “Proud moment to make my Premier League debut tonight. Gutted we couldn’t get the 3 points but still a lot of football to be played this season. Let’s go again.”

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Arsenal fan since a young age, now a season ticket holder who enjoys writing, tweeting and making videos about the Gunners.