In this instalment of our TT Roundup, Football Transfer Tavern have gathered three of the biggest stories to have involved Everton recently and have provided our thoughts on the reports published.
PSV and Ajax keen on Lewis Gibson
According to 90min, PSV Eindhoven and Ajax are keen to battle it out for the signature of Everton prospect Lewis Gibson, who will be out of contract at Goodison Park next summer.
The Eredivisie outfits are said to have connections with the defender’s representatives, who are based in the Netherlands, and see that as their route to landing a bargain fee for the 19-year-old who has also been linked with Rangers (The Athletic) and a possible return to former academy side Newcastle United (Football Insider).
Gibson is yet to earn his senior debut with Everton, where his involvement in first-team training with Marco Silva’s side has seen David Unsworth frequently leave the England U20 international out of his plans with the Toffees’ U23s.
Should the teenage centre-half leave Merseyside at the end of his contract next June, clubs would have to pay Everton a compensation fee for his development, although the figure would come in well below the potential £6million the Blues paid Newcastle in 2017.
Gibson has been on the cusp of making his first-team breakthrough this season following a string of outings in pre-season and his regular inclusion in Silva’s practice sessions, but for whatever reason the Portuguese head coach looked elsewhere in the Carabao Cup and is yet to deviate from Michael Keane and Yerry Mina in the Premier League (WhoScored).
Without earning that maiden senior bow, it would be extremely likely that Gibson walks away from Goodison Park next summer when his contract comes to an end, and will look for a club where he feels his path into the senior game will be least blocked.
The reports of Newcastle’s interest have suggested Gibson wants to move back to the North East, where Sean and Matty Longstaff have established themselves in the first-team fold, and that will act as Everton’s primary opponent if they want to retain the centre-back’s services.
AC Milan could reconsider Moise Kean in 2020
According to Calciomercato.it, AC Milan could reconsider their position over a move for Moise Kean in 2020, as they look to snap up young talents that can be developed and sold on for substantial sums in future windows.
The Italian publication claim that Kean’s lack of game time with Everton has alerted Milan to the potential of striking a deal, but will face challenges in the Toffees not wanting to take a loss on their £27.5m (BBC) summer signing and in Juventus’ option to match any offer.
Kean has featured in each of the Blues’ Premier League games this season, but has only earned two top-flight starts thus far with a majority of his appearances coming as a late substitute, such as his outing in Saturday’s 2-0 win over West Ham United when he came on with four minutes to play (TransferMarkt).
Everton will certainly be loath to take a loss on Kean inside a year of singing the Kopa Award (France Football) and Golden Boy (Liverpool Echo) nominee, and it would be unlikely that the Goodison Park natives were to even consider parting ways with the 19-year-old so soon into their relationship.
The Vercelli-born prospect is still adapting to the Premier League and Silva’s tactics, so it is hardly unusual that the youngster has not featured in a more prominent role thus far.
But if Kean cannot demonstrate that things are starting to turn in his favour beyond the mid-season mark, the reports of interest in his signature will only heighten given his widely acknowledged potential.
Garth Crooks hails Andre Gomes as ‘catalyst’ in West Ham win
BBC Sport pundit Garth Crooks has hailed Andre Gomes as being the ‘catalyst’ in Everton beating West Ham 2-0 on Saturday, after the Portuguese central midfielder made more passes and more passes in the opposition’s half than any other player during the Premier League encounter.
Gomes returned to Silva’s starting line-up for the first time since facing Wolverhampton Wanderers on September 1 (WhoScored), and delivered a performance against the Irons that featured one key ball, three successful dribbles and two interceptions.
Only Djibril Sidibe and Lucas Digne enjoyed more time in possession than Gomes, but it was the 26-year-old midfielder that Crook felt was pivotal to Everton recording the first win in five league games.
Writing in his Team of the Week column for BBC Sport, Crooks noted: “If ever Everton needed a victory then this was it, if only to shut up those Moaning Minnies who are starting to question Marco’s Silva’s ability to manage the club.
“This was an excellent performance by Everton against an in-form West Ham and the catalyst for this performance was Andre Gomes.
“The Portugal international has been badly missed by Everton because of injury but if he can remain fit and Theo Walcott stays focussed then anything is possible at Goodison. It is still a great place to play football.”
Gomes was certainly a key influence on proceedings at the weekend, as beyond his game-high number of passes, he also completed the most dribbles of any Everton player with three, as he frequently drove forward with possession.
The 26-year-old also tried to contribute defensively with five attempted tackles, but was dribbled past on four occasions which was double that of second-worst offenders Sidibe, Jack Wilshere and Arthur Masuaku.
But without Everton having Gomes on the ball as much as they did, they would likely have struggled to command as much control as they managed, as Fabian Delph spent 7% of the Blues’ defeat at Burnley in possession of the football, but made just 19 of his 59 passes in the final third and only one of those led to a key chance.
Everton fans, would you accept a bid of more than £30m for Kean in 2020, so that you take no financial hit on his transfer? Let us know in the comments below…
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