Everton are among a clutch of European sides interested in offering Ricardo Rodriguez a route out of AC Milan, according to Swiss newspaper Blick.
Rodriquez moved to the San Siro from Bundesliga side Wolfsburg in 2017, but now finds himself out of favour in Italy after the Rossoneri acquired Theo Hernandez from Real Madrid this summer for €20million (£17.9m).
Switzerland international Rodriguez had been the number one choice at AC Milan since moving to the San Siro in July 2017, making 34 outings in his maiden Serie A campaign and a further 35 outings last season (TransferMarkt).
The 27-year-old started each of the Rossoneri’s opening league games under Marco Giampaolo following Gennaro Gattuso’s departure, as well, but has since featured exclusively on the substitutes’ bench as Milan endured a dire run of form which led to their manager’s sacking on Tuesday.
Rodriguez is not expected to be reinstated to the first-choice position under new head coach Stefano Pioli, either, with the 53-year-old expected to continue with Hernandez as his number one.
Zurich-born Rodriguez is instead expected to leave Milan in the winter with his days at the San Siro now numbered, although he is not permitted to discuss his situation as AC have the left-back ‘muzzled’, according to Blick.
But interest in the 67-cap international is widespread, with Everton joined by Atletico Madrid, FC Schalke 04, Borussia Dortmund and AS Roma in being credited with an interest in a defender thought to be available for less than the €15m (£13.4m) Milan paid Wolfsburg in 2017.
Rodriguez had been linked with moves to Arsenal, Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain before joining Milan, with reports he rejected the trio’s advances as he only had his eyes set on a move to Italy (Tuttosport via Goal).
Blick add that Rodriguez’s place in Switzerland’s Euro 2020 plans could be at risk if the defender is not playing regular football ahead of next summer’s competition, but it would be highly unlikely that he would receive that at Goodison Park.
Everton named Lucas Digne their Player of the Year last season for impressing many in his debut campaign in England, and Rodriguez would need to put on a string of eyebrow-raising performances in training to see that Marco Silva even considers dropping the Frenchman.
Rodriguez would make a solid back-up for the former Barcelona man if he were open to moving to a club where he would still be competing for minutes, though.
Across his Serie A appearances last term, Rodriguez averaged 1.7 successful tackles per ninety minutes, along with 1.1 interceptions, 2.2 clearances, won 1.2 aerial duels and penned 0.6 key passes, according to data collected by WhoScored.
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