Everton’s majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri personally told Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha he would play for the Toffees before the move fell through, according to reports.
The Toffees are yet to make any major signings during the January transfer window, with only Jarrad Branthwaite joining the U23s squad from Carlisle United. It remains to be seen whether or not manager Carlo Ancelotti will bring in any players in the next few days as the clock ticks down towards the transfer deadline.
Despite a poor start to the season which resulted in the dismissal of former boss Marco Silva, the Blues now sit 12th in the Premier League table and sit just four points behind Manchester United in 5th. In the summer, Everton were heavily linked with Palace’s Zaha but were priced out as they were not willing to meet the asking price of £80m.
The Athletic revealed that Moshiri personally told the Ivorian that he would play for his team as the deal stagnated throughout the warmer months. As a result, they opted to go for Arsenal winger Alex Iwobi for £35m, who has had a slow start to life at Goodison Park with just one goal from 16 appearances in the league, as per Whoscored.
If the Toffees got the Zaha deal over the line, their season could have been very different. A player who is keen to win the ball and make things happen could have meant more goals for the likes of Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin at the top of the field. Zaha has three goals and two assists in 24 league outings this season and Whoscored recorded that he has averaged five dribbles, 1.4 shots and a pass success rate of 79.6%. In comparison to Iwobi, he has just 1.3 dribbles, 1.2 shots and a 79.5% passing accuracy percentage.
The hunger and drive to get on the ball from the Crystal Palace wide man could have seen Everton much higher up the table than they currently stand, and Marco Silva perhaps still in a job on Merseyside.
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