Everton are set to lose Idrissa Gana Gueye to Paris Saint-Germain this summer, but the Senegalese sensation’s departure is reportedly on hold until Marcel Brands is able to secure his replacement.
Former Manchester City midfielder Fabian Delph had been tipped to have moved to Merseyside with the potential to cover the 29-year-old’s likely exit, but Marco Silva is keen to add a more resolute option to his ranks instead.
1.FSV Mainz 05’s Jean-Philippe Gbamin is believed to be the club’s number one target, with reports suggesting the Bundesliga side could demand €40million (£35.8m) for the 23-year-old midfielder who can also operate as a centre-half.
We have also been linked with Southampton’s Mario Lemina, but it is understood Olympique Lyonnais’ Lucas Tousart, OGC Nice ace Adrien Tameze and Chelsea’s Tiemoue Bakayoko are the players currently on Brands’ shortlist should a move for Gbamin fall through.
But do the Toffees already hold the answer to our Director of Football’s search?
Some Blues supporters on Reddit have been discussing that exact question lately, with fans debating whether James McCarthy can finally make his return to regular first-team action or if Morgan Schneiderlin can put to good work his return to form last season to make Gueye’s spot his.
Both McCarthy and Schneiderlin have uncertain futures on Merseyside in reality, with the club looking to sell the outcast Republic of Ireland international for £10million and have fielded offers from Crystal Palace in the region of £8million.
Galatasaray, meanwhile, have courted Schneiderlin, with the Super Lig outfit approaching Everton asking for the Frenchman on loan only to be waved away.
If either were to become Silva’s new holding midfielder, it would be a fair assumption that Schneiderlin would hold an advantage over McCarthy, given the boss called on the former Southampton and Manchester United man on 16 occasions last season (eleven starts, five times from the bench) compared to just once with the former Wigan star.
Schneiderlin also put to good use his recall against Cardiff City in February to retain a starting position for the Merseyside Derby the following weekend, where he recorded three tackles, one interception and won five aerial duels.
McCarthy, on the other hand, featured for just 14 minutes during his only appearance under Silva, as he came off the bench during our 4-0 triumph at home to Manchester United in April to play six passes and record two tackles.
The club also have Tom Davies on offer, and Silva has often shared his admiration of the Blues product, who he awarded the captain’s armband to on six occasions during a 19 appearance campaign.
Here’s what these Everton supporters shared in regards to Schneiderlin or McCarthy being the club’s Gueye replacement…