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Everton sign midfielder Doucoure from Watford

Soccer Football - Premier League - Brighton & Hove Albion v Watford - The American Express Community Stadium, Brighton, Britain - February 8, 2020 Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure REUTERS/David Klein/Files

(Reuters) - Everton have signed midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure from Championship side Watford on a three-year deal, the Premier League club said on Tuesday.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but British media reported that Everton paid around 20 million pounds ($26 million) for the 27-year-old who had three years left on his contract with Watford, who were relegated from the Premier League last season.

“I have been waiting a long time to come here and now it has happened so I am very happy,” Doucoure told the club website.

“Everton has a big history in English football and it is a good club for me to have a step up in my career.”

Doucoure became a handy goal-scoring midfielder for Watford, consistently playing 35 or more league games a season.

The Frenchman is Everton’s third major signing in the close-season following the arrival of James Rodriguez from Real Madrid and Allan from Napoli as manager Carlo Ancelotti aims to strengthen the Merseyside club’s midfield ahead of the new season.

Everton finished 12th last term and begin their new Premier League campaign with a trip to Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Chennai; Editing by Toby Davis