Everton Transfer Targets
Monday 12 June 11:07 Tweet
Ronald Koeman's first season in charge of Everton can be regarded as a success as the club return to European football as they will play in the Europa League next season. However, they failed to impress in any of their games against the top six while they were knocked out early in the domestic cups at the first hurdle. Everton could be set to lose two of their key players ahead of the new season, we look at how they should reinvest the money into their squad.
The Toffees have identified Burnley centre-back Michael Keane as their number one defensive target this summer. The 24-year-old has just one year left on his current contract at Turf Moor and is expected to leave Burnley after helping them stay up in the Premier League last season.
Ronald Koeman is keen to add numbers to their defence ahead of next season and are favourites to sign Keane now that Manchester United have signed Victor Lindelof for £30 million. Everton is prepared to offer Keane the move he wants this summer to further his career and force his way into a regular starting place with England.
Michael Keane was a huge factor in Burnley staying up last season. Sean Dyche's side was resolute in their defensive displays for most of the season, displayed in keeping 10 clean sheets and was a crucial component in Burnley's defence along with goalkeeper Ton Heaton. With just one year remaining on Keane's contract, Burnley will be looking to secure as much cash as possible for the defender with £20-25 million being the fee that may be enough to secure Keane's signature.
Possible Transfer Fee: £20-25M
It's been widely reported by news outlets that Everton agreed a £25 million deal with Swansea City for Gyfli Sigurdsson back in May, but the midfielder is holding out for more than £120,000 per week. Everton was keen to move quickly to try to tie up a deal for Swansea's star man amid interest from Southampton and Tottenham.
Sigurdsson, despite Swansea's failing for most of the season, had a solid 2016/17 campaign. The 27-year-old netted nine goals and added 13 assists in 38 league games, creating 72 chances for the Swans and was crucial in helping Swansea City avoid relegation to the Championship. Everton is keen on signing a midfielder who can score and assist, a problem that Ronald Koeman lamented for the majority of last season, with a particular focus on Ross Barkley. Gylfi Sigurdsson is a proven Premier League player, regularly coming to Swansea's need, netting 27 league goals for the club since his return in 2014.
However, it may not be plain sailing for Everton in their bid to sign the Iceland international with Sigurdsson saying at Swansea's end of season awards that he expects to stay.
I expect to stay. I signed a new contract last summer and I've got three years left, so it's down to the club if they want to sell me. It's down to them, but I'm very happy here. I'm not trying to leave, not desperate to go or anything.
Ultimately, if Swansea City wants to sell Gylfi Sigurdsson, it looks like he'll go to Everton for a reported £25 million. If not, Everton may have to look for another creative midfielder with proven Premier League experience.
Probable Transfer Fee: £25-30M
Malaga's Sandro Ramirez is a long-term target for Everton and it appears that a deal looks set to go ahead in the next 10 days. Everton will hold talks with Ramirez ahead of agreeing a £5.2 million fee after a proposed move to Atletico Madrid fell through following their transfer ban. The Spain U21 international was spotted in Liverpool which has added fuel to the fire amid rumours he is set to join the club.
Sandro Ramirez scored more La Liga goals than any other player aged 21 or under in 2016/17 with the Malaga forward netting 14 goals in 30 league games as Malaga finished 11th in La Liga. With Romelu Lukaku reportedly set to leave the club for a high fee, Everton is eager to reinforce their forward options with the Belgium striker reportedly set on joining former club, Chelsea.
It may take more than one forward signing to replace Romelu Lukaku's goals for Everton, though. He's a massive presence up top and with the Toffees reportedly linked with Josh King and Andre Gray, it could appear that Ronald Koeman may be prepared to change Everton's shape and play two strikers.
Probable Transfer Fee: £6M
Everton are fighting with Tottenham for the signature of Bournemouth striker Josh King. The Norway international was superb for Bournemouth in the 2016/17 campaign, but particularly in 2017 where he netted 13 goals in 18 league games as the Cherries finished in the top half of the Premier League; largely down to King's goals.
Everton's lack of goals frustrated Ronald Koeman for most of the season, surprising considering only the top five scored more goals than the Toffees in 2016/17. However, their over-reliance on Romelu Lukaku was Everton's main problem, Ronald Koeman would not want to be seen saying that - which is understandable.
With Lukaku seemingly off to Stamford Bridge, Josh King could nail down a position in Koeman's first XI if he proves himself in training and in pre-season friendlies should a deal go ahead for the striker. He's able to play as the main man or as a supporting striker should Ronald Koeman decide to play two up front for the 2017/18 season where Everton will be battling a domestic campaign while also hoping to qualify for the Europa League group stages.
Josh King is an attainable target for Everton, a player who had a solid league campaign and with better players around him, could prove to be an astute signing if Bournemouth are willing to sell him.
Probable Transfer Fee: £15-20M
The 25-year-old striker is on Everton's radar this summer as they look to replace Chelsea-bound Romelu Lukaku. Everton have been heavily linked with Sandro Ramirez and Josh King, but are now linked with Andre Gray. The Burnley striker netted nine goals in just 26 Premier League starts, but his season was clouded in chaos as he was banned for four matches at the start of the season due to homophobic comments made on Twitter in 2012. Nine goals in 26 starts isn't a bad record considering only Boro and Sunderland created fewer chances than Burnley last season, a major factor in why both sides were relegated to the Championship.
Gray has had a meteoric rise, performing at every level when playing for non-league Luton, netting plenty of goals as he moved to Brentford and then Burnley, becoming an integral member of the squad as Burnley won the Championship - scoring 25 league goals.
With just 12 months of his contract remaining, a similar situation that Michael Keane is involved with at Burnley, Burnley could look to offload the striker to combat the issue of Gray leaving for free in the summer of 2018.
Burnley signed Andre Gray for £10 million in 2015, the most expensive Championship signing that summer so the Clarets will be looking to gain a big fee if they are to sell the 25-year-old this summer.
Probable Transfer Fee: £15-20M
Note: Odds are subject to change