Everton supporters have been in fine voice in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their side get back to winning ways in the Premier League courtesy of a 3-1 success over Crystal Palace on Saturday.
Sam Allardyce’s men went into their clash with the relegation-threatened Eagles off the back of a 5-1 thumping at the hands of Arsenal last time out, a result which saw them slip just seven points clear of the division’s bottom three. Yet the Toffees put some more distance between themselves and the relegation zone on Saturday as goals from Gylfi Sigurdsson, Oumar Niasse, and Tom Davies sealed a routine victory for the hosts, with Luka Milivojevic’s late penalty proving to be nothing more than a consolation for Roy Hodgson’s Palace.
Subsequently, there have been many delighted Evertonians in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom are hoping that Saturday’s victory can be the catalyst for a run of form which completely banishes any lingering threats of relegation.
In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident Toffees fans to discuss, not least recent reports suggesting that their team could cash in on summer signing Michael Keane come the end of the campaign.
And while the 25-year-old hasn’t quite hit the heights at Goodison Park since his move from Burnley eight months ago, axing him in the summer makes very little sense, and could actually turn out to be one of their biggest transfer mistakes in many a year.
Ultimately, the England international was brought in over the summer at a time whereby Everton desperately needed young blood in their backline, what with Phil Jagielka 35, and both Ashley Williams and Leighton Baines 33.
Why, then, get rid of one of their younger prospects this summer, when the likelihood is that a few years down the line none of the aforementioned trio will still be at the club?
Ultimately, he hasn’t just become a bad player in the last eight months.
Many in the Tavern felt Everton completed a shrewd bit of business luring Keane to the club for £30 million during the summer, what with his efforts for Burnley last term, in helping Sean Dyche’s side stave off relegation with a defensive record better than all but one side in the bottom half, underlining his status as one of the next big-things in English football.
Yes, he hasn’t quite hit the heights he set while at Turf Moor, but Everton haven’t exactly been pulling down trees themselves this season – it’s not as if Keane is an anomaly in a performing team.
Getting rid of the Englishman would surely be a backwards step, as perseverance under Allardyce, a manager renowned for defensive structure and solidarity, could get best out of him, and ultimately make him a better defender than what he showed at Burnley last season.
There’s been some bad transfer moves by the club recently, Davy Klaassen’s arrival from Ajxx in the summer perhaps the worst of the lot, but sanctioning Keane’s departure would surely be up there given the expected turnover of defenders in the coming years – he and either Ramiro Funes Mori or Mason Holgate could strike up a formidable partnership for many seasons to come.
The ability is definitely there, the potential is definitely there, selling Keane this summer would be nothing more than a knee-jerk reaction to a slightly underwhelming campaign by not only the defender himself, but the team in general.
As such, sanctioning the £18 million-rated star’s departure (as per Transfermarkt) this summer could turn out to be one of the biggest transfer mistakes Everton have made in many a year.
Everton fans… what do you think? Let us know!