21 Muhamed Besic

bih Bosnia and Herzegovina
September 10, 1992

Muhamed Besic arrived at Everton in the summer of 2014 after impressing for Bosnia and Herzegovina at the World Cup in Brazil.

Aged 21 at the time, the versatile right-footer was ever present as Bosnia made their first ever finals appearance, though they failed to emerge from a testing group that contained Nigeria, Iran and eventual tournament runners-up Argentina.

However, Besic shone on the global stage, turning in a particularly impressive performance against the Argentines on what was his first competitive start for his country.

A former Under-21 international, he had earlier become Bosnia’s youngest ever senior international when turning out against Slovakia aged just 18 in November 2010.

Born in Germany to Bosnian parents, Besic played youth football for Tennis Borussia Berlin and signed for Hamburg aged 16. There he made a number of appearances for the club’s ‘B’ team, before moving to Hungary to join Ferencváros in 2012.

He was named the best foreign player in the Hungarian top flight in his very first season and also helped the Budapest-based outfit to victory in the Hungarian League Cup.

Besic continued to be a key player for manager Thomas Doll’s first team before completing his move to Goodison Park at the end of his second campaign.

Besic has played predominantly as a defender during his club career but his ability on the ball and skill at reading the opposition’s play have also allowed him to excel in a deep-lying midfield role.

Indeed, it was in midfield where Besic was utilised in his first two years at Goodison. He made 31 appearances in 2014/15 and followed this up 17 more the following season as hamstring problems took effect.

Still, Besic’s no-nonsense, tough-tackling, displays have already ensured his is a favourite on the Gwladys Street.

One particular performance against Manchester City in the Capital One Cup semi-final first leg, when he silenced Yaya Toure, earned much acclaim from Evertonians.

In March 2015, it was announced that Besic had inked a new five-and-a-half year contract with the Toffees.

After a promising pre-season under Ronald Koeman, disaster struck for Besic when he suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage in Wayne Rooney’s testimonial in August.

The midfielder helped the Under-23s secure the Premier League 2 title towards the end of the campaign as he looked to regain full fitness and, while he was named among the substitutes for the final couple of first-team games of the term, he did not make a single senior appearance in 2016/17.