With doubt growing over our chances of signing Andre Gomes, Marcel Brands may have to try his hand elsewhere to find Marco Silva’s next box-to-box midfielder to partner Idrissa Gana Gueye.
One potential candidate could be Real Betis’ Giovani Lo Celso, who has been linked with the Toffees recently in a move which could set the club back around €50million (£43.6m).
Another name a few of the club’s supporters have been debating the merits of is Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse, who may not have been linked with Everton, but some feel could be a worthwhile addition.
At present, TransferMarkt value the 2-cap England international at £13.5million, although that figure does not take into account his post-Christmas surge under the former RB Leipzig manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.
Before Hasenhuttl took charge of the Saints, Ward-Prowse had only made six Premier League appearances in the 2018/19 campaign, but went on to miss just three top-flight games as the St Mary’s natives secured their top-flight status for another year.
The £45,000-a-week midfielder also struck all of his seven goals and four assists for the club since the New Year, in a run which saw the 24-year-old left out of the starting line up on just three occasions in all competitions.
Gomes, for comparison, only managed to score and assist one goal for Everton during his time on loan from Barcelona, and also recorded fewer key passes per 90 minutes than Ward-Prowse by some margin – the 25-year-old Portuguese averaged 0.3 per 90, while Southampton’s academy graduate registered 2.1.
Ward-Prowse also edged Gomes for shots, interceptions, and blocks per 90, with Silva’s compatriot only narrowly holding the advantage when it comes to successful tackles but from more attempts.
All things considered, here’s what Everton supporters on Reddit made of one fan’s suggestion that Ward-Prowse may be a worth signing…