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Profit Players: Michael Keane

Profit Players: Michael Keane -Profit Players

Everton supporters have been in high spirits throughout the current two-week break for internationals after seeing their side pick up a credible draw in their most recent Premier League encounter.

Marco Silva’s men went into their meeting with in-form and unbeaten Chelsea off the back of beating Brighton in their previous league clash, and were thus full of confidence ahead of their visit to Stamford Bridge. And the Toffees came away from proceedings with a deserved point following a 0-0 draw with Maurizio Sarri’s Blues, a result which keeps the Merseysiders ninth in the Premier League table.

Thus, there have been many satisfied Evertonians up and down the country in recent times, several of whom have been heaping praise on defender Michael Keane for his upturn in form under new boss Silva this term.

Yet it was former manager Ronald Koeman who lured the Englishman to Goodison Park last summer for £25.65 million (as per Transfermarkt), a deal which is slowly but surely looking more and more like a masterstroke such is how vital he has been to the Toffees this time round.

Ultimately, the 25-year-old earned a move to Everton as a result of excelling in the heart of Sean Dyche’s Burnley between 2014 and 2017, not least in what turned out to be his final season at the club in helping the Clarets to Premier League safety.

In fact, that impressive form earned him four England caps last term to underline just how good a defender he is and indeed looks set to be, thus prompting Koeman, who saw his side struggle at times defensively in their run to seventh place in 2016/17, to splash the cash on Keane.

Yet it was looking like money poorly spent by the Dutchman for much of last season given the 25-year-old found the going tough at Goodison Park, as although he eventually ended the season with 30 Premier League appearances to his name, very few of those resulted in convincing performances for a team that conceded a staggering 58 goals in their 38 league games.

And the summer arrivals of Kurt Zouma and Yerry Mina only heaped extra pressure on Keane’s shoulders to perform under new boss Silva, but he has so far been up to the task in finally looking more and more like the defender they thought they had signed from Burnley last year.

The 25-year-old, whose fine form earned him a recall to Gareth Southgate’s England squad this fortnight, has made one of the centre back spots in Silva’s team his own with several commanding displays, earning him ten starts in the league so far, missing the other two games only as a result of injury.

And with the Toffees certainly improving defensively in the last few months, having kept three clean sheets in their last six league games, it appears as though Keane is finally coming into his own at Everton – he looks to be the number one centre back at the club at present.

So while eyebrows may have been raised for much of last season given the £25.65 million Everton spent on Keane wasn’t proving dividends, it certainly is now – in fact, it’s a deal which is looking more and more like a Koeman masterstroke with every passing day.

Everton fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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Article title: Profit Players: Michael Keane

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