With ‘Oh Moussa Sissoko’ ringing around the stadium, the French midfielder proudly stood in front of the South Stand on Sunday, ready to reflect on his season after our 2-2 draw against Everton secured fourth place in the Premier League.
The word ‘renaissance’ comes to mind with Moussa. He admitted his first two seasons at the Club were tough and that is reflected by his starts in the Premier League – eight in 2016/17 and 15 last season compared to 27 this time around.
This season, we’ve seen the best of Moussa Sissoko. Pure strength and power, 208 ball recoveries in the Premier League and his driving runs from midfield often leading the team’s transition from defensive areas to attack. He’s made 43 appearances in all competitions and started 36 of our last 47 matches stretching back to October. Indeed, he was injured for three of those and rested in the FA Cup at Tranmere and Palace.
THIS MEANS A LOT TO ME. EVERYONE KNOWS MY FIRST TWO SEASONS WERE DIFFICULT BUT I KEPT WORKING AND TODAY I CAN BE VERY HAPPY WITH WHAT I’VE DONE
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Outstanding in our semi-final against Ajax, Moussa now has a Champions League Final to look forward to, just under a year after he was left out of the French squad that went on to lift the World Cup last summer.
“I never give up,” he said. “In life, you always have to believe in yourself and give everything. That’s what I’ve done. Now I receive the benefit of that work and I’m very happy with that.
“This means a lot to me. I’ve had a great season, I’m very happy, everyone knows my first two seasons were difficult but I kept working and today I can be very happy with what I’ve done. I need to keep going like that and hopefully we can win the Champions League in three weeks.”
Sunday’s point against Everton was enough for fourth and means we’ll play in the Champions League for the fourth-successive season next term.
“It’s special,” added Moussa. “It means we are doing a great job. Each year we try to improve. Now we have another massive game in the history of the Club and hopefully we can do it.”
Moussa hurdles Yerry Mina and Morgan Schneiderlin in Sunday’s draw against Everton