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21-goal striker Moussa Marega would be good Everton signing, but not for £35m

English Premier League

21-goal striker Moussa Marega would be good Everton signing, but not for £35m

The Malian international has been in good form for Porto this season.

Everton have been linked with a move for Porto striker Moussa Marega this week. It was recently reported by The Mirror that Everton are keen on the player, along with West Ham United and Swansea City. The Mali international has a £35 million release clause in his deal at Porto. If Everton were to match that fee, then Porto would have no choice but to accept an offer.

But is he worth such an extravagant amount?

Everton have recently started spending much more in the transfer market. Big money was used to bring the likes of Jordan Pickford, Michael Keane and Gylfi Sigurdsson to the club in recent times – the latter breaking the club’s record transfer fee.

Porto’s Malian forward Moussa Marega celebrates after scoring a goal during the Portuguese league football match FC Porto vs Maritimo at the Dragao stadium in Porto, on December 18, 2017. Porto won the match 3-1. / AFP PHOTO / MIGUEL RIOPA (Photo credit should read MIGUEL RIOPA/AFP/Getty Images)

Porto are notoriously hard to negotiate with. Clubs often end up overpaying for players at the Portuguese side due to the tough stance they take on selling players.

£35 million is certainly a lot of money and Everton will be hoping they can convince the Portuguese side to consider a substantially smaller amount for the attacker.

Then again, in today’s market, it might be a fair price considering his stats.

Marega, who holds a French passport so would not be subject to a work permit, has been in fine scoring form.

Porto’s Malian forward Moussa Marega gestures during the Portuguese league football match CD Feirense vs FC Porto at the Marcolino de Castro stadium in Santa Maria da Feira on January 3, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / MIGUEL RIOPA (Photo credit should read MIGUEL RIOPA/AFP/Getty Images)

Last season, on loan at Vitoria Guimares from his parent club, the striker scored 14 goals in 31 games. This campaign, since returning to Porto, he has been even more prolific. Marega is currently on 21 goals from 36 games. With those sort of stats, Porto will be entitled to ask for the full £35 million.

Everton, however, should not pay it. Marega is still relatively unproven and goal-scoring success in Portugal does not always translate into English football. The fact Marega played six games in the Champions League this season and failed to score a goal is a stat which should put Everton off paying the full amount.

Would he be a good signing? He certainly shows signs of potential. But at £35 million? Everton would be better off spending their money elsewhere.

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Sports journalist based in Bristol. Everton fan for my sins.

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