No-one has scored more Premier League headers than Dominic Calvert-Lewin since the start of last season, but his leap to prominence is no surprise to the man who signed him for Everton.
Former Toffees defender and now academy director David Unsworth says he is still “amazed” that he managed to buy the forward from Sheffield United for a “cheeky” bid of a reported £1.5m in 2016.
He first spotted Calvert-Lewin as a 15-year-old in the gym when he was head of the Blades’ academy, and quickly realised he was “a talent who stuck out”.
“What first caught my eye was his gym work,” Unsworth tells BBC Sport. “We’d be there in the evenings and his power from a standing jump was the best I’ve ever seen. He was doing a lot of squats, and jumps at an incredible height onto these wooden boxes.
“He had a few growth issues – his legs were growing at a different rate to his body – but that was the first time I saw him and thought ‘wow, there’s an incredible athlete there’.”
|Player||Top speed (km/h)|
|Tariq Lamptey (Brighton)||36.6|
|Kyle Walker (Man City)||36.6|
|Nathan Tella (Southampton)||35.6|
|Oliver Burke (Sheff Utd)||35.2|
|Aboubakar Kamara (Fulham)||35.2|
|Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton)||35.1|
|Jack Grealish (Aston Villa)||35.1|
|Jamal Lewis (Newcastle)||35.1|
|Harvey Barnes (Leicester)||35.1|
|Kenny Tete (Fulham)||35.1|
There is far more to Calvert-Lewin than his athleticism, though. He has since developed into “a complete striker”, according to Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti, who has also coached Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid and Filippo Inzaghi at AC Milan.
Calvert-Lewin’s nine goals in all competitions this season have helped Everton make a perfect start to their campaign and they sit top of the Premier League