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What now? Everton’s Davies cheers on American juco

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It’s a small world, this footballing one.

It’s also not every day a Premier League player tosses out best wishes to a junior college in the United States of America.

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So it raised our eyebrows when Everton youngster Tom Davies, he of the 19 appearances this season, proffered a shoutout to the Indian Hills Community College men’s soccer team ahead of its NJCAA Tournament debut on Tuesday.

It turns out IHCC sophomore midfielder Adam Garner’s quite close with Davies’ older brother Liam, a left midfielder at National League side Chester FC.

“Basically I grew up with his brother,” said Garner, who’s played 20 matches this season for IHCC. “Tom’s only two years younger. I started to get to know him really well on a holiday with his family when he was 16. Since then, him and his brother have been like my best mates.”

Garner was taken aback after his freshman season, when he returned to home in December to find his buddy Tom’s career had exploded during the festive season. And as an Everton supporter, Garner’s witnessed his friend become one of the players on his favorite club.

“It’s my second year here,” Garner said. “When he broke through, it was when I went home at Christmas. I didn’t realize how big he’d become, so it was kinda mind-blowing.”

So while Garner’s supporting Everton, Davies has some love for coach Jon Fridal’s Warriors. IHCC won its first tournament match 1-0 over Louisburg and can advance to the semifinals with a win over Tyler College on Wednesday.

“We had a goal at the beginning of the season, and after last year our coach improved the squad a lot,” Garner said. “With the qualities brought in, we just took it game-by-game.”