Everton stand a strong chance of challenging for a place in the Premier League’s top-four next season if they can pull of swoops for Kurt Zouma, Wilfried Zaha and Andre Silva, according to Adam Skinner of the Express.
Skinner notes that the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea are going into the new campaign with the gremlins of last season still in their lockers, and do not appear to have improved the players on offer to their respective managers enough to overcome their shortfalls.
Leicester City and Wolverhampton Wanderers, on the other hand, have improved their squads at the King Power Stadium and Molineux following a strong showing in 2018/19, while Tottenham Hotspur look a strong bet to claim third-place behind Manchester City and Liverpool.
The race for fourth, therefore, could be wide open for any one of six sides to snatch, but Skinner expects Everton’s best hope would rely on Marcel Brands adding one final addition to each area of Marco Silva’s Goodison squad.
The £30million-valued Frenchman, however, has insisted his future is at Stamford Bridge as he plans on impressing new boss Frank Lampard, while Zaha could set us back as much as £80million if Crystal Palace refuse to move on their asking price.
Instead, the 33-cap Portugal international is being courted by AS Monaco following a season spent on loan with Sevilla, having failed to live up to his hype when he moved to the San Siro in 2017.
Negotiations between the striker and Leonardo Jardim’s Les Monegasques have stalled recently, though, with reports in Italy suggesting the deal is at risk of collapsing over personal terms as Monaco and Silva are ‘very far apart’ in their valuations of his worth.
Skinner only briefly mentions Monaco’s interest in his suggestion of who Everton should target to cement a right for fourth-place, with the Express writer instead focusing on how the 23-year-old could come to Merseyside and become our new leading forward if a deal close to £20million could be reached.
Signing Silva for £20million, while meeting Palace’s valuation of Zaha and convincing Zouma to leave Chelsea would set Everton back £130million, and each suggested move would seem questionable at present.
During his debut season at the San Siro, Silva struck the back of the net twice in 24 Serie A fixtures, yet found life in the Europa League more to his taste with eight goals in 14 games. His subsequent loan spell with Sevilla, meanwhile, returned eleven goals in 40 games across all competitions.