Talks between Everton and Belgian outfit Royal Antwerp over a deal for right-back Aurelio Buta are now at an ‘advanced’ stage, according to journalist Rudy Galetti.
The 24-year-old has played every minute of Antwerp’s four Jupiler Pro League games so far this season. It has been a tricky start for the side who finished third last season; they’ve picked up only one win and incurred two defeats.
However, Buta has been one of their shining lights so far, his average WhoScored rating of 7.11 the fifth-highest in the squad. He has contributed two assists as well as averaging 4.5 tackles and 2.3 clearances per 90 minutes.
Journalist Aster Nzeyimana has hailed the Portuguese defender as ‘one of the best full-backs’ in the division, adding that the 24-year-old is ‘very gifted’ technically and has been ‘instrumental’ to Antwerp’s successes in recent years.
Galetti tweeted that negotiations have progressed to the bidding stage, with a €4m (£3.4m) Everton offer presently ‘under discussion’.
He added that it is an ‘evolving situation’, so further developments should be expected soon.
It was reported by The Athletic in July that Everton were hopeful of signing another right-back this summer as a long-term successor to club captain Seamus Coleman.
Buta may not be enormously high-profile but £3.4m looks like a bargain for an all-action full-back whose figures suggest he can chip in going forward while also defending diligently. They might even have unearthed a gem if they get this one over the line at such a low cost.
In other news, this Everton player came under fire against Southampton.
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