But he is set to continue his career in the English top flight having penned a three-year deal to join Carlo Ancelotti's squad, which has already been bolstered with the captures of Napoli midfielder Allan and Real Madrid star James Rodriguez this week.
There has even been - surprisingly- a mostly positive reaction from the Spanish press, with most choosing to focus on the positives for Madrid and not criticise the player for what is very much a step-down.
"I'm hopeful that I can perform at my highest level and give something back to the fans and to the Club, who have shown their faith in me, by putting in consistently good performances. This kind of connection can be helpful to improve the results, the team and results of this club".
"I can add goals as well".
It's always been apparent where Carlo Ancelotti felt Everton's shortcomings most needed addressing - the engine room.
"With flair players you need defensive, robust midfield players that are going to put in the ground work and Doucoure and Allan will bring that". But we did not see enough of Bernard last season. "It is energetic, competitive - those three signings bring a lot to the party".
After a number of stellar performances for Colombia in the 2014 World Cup - in which he won the Golden Boot with six goals, including an extraordinary strike against Uruguay - James joined Madrid in a deal reportedly worth €90million.
The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.