Everton: Bolasie deal close; England ace wanted; former Blackburn striker linked
It is set to be another busy week of transfer activity at Goodison Park, with Crystal Palace winger Yannick Bolasie expected to be the latest player to put pen to paper with the Toffees.
The Liverpool Echo reports that the 27-year-old has passed his medical and the club are now working through the necessary paper work to complete the transfer. Everton are hopeful of announcing the deal later today, meaning that Bolasie will have plenty of time to get to know his new teammates ahead of Saturday’s trip to West Bromwich Albion.
The Blues are expected to pay £25 million, potentially rising to £30 million, for the former Bristol City man, and whilst the fee may appear steep, they will be receiving a player that can be truly scintillating on his day. Bolasie is one of the Premier League’s quickest players with and without the ball at his feet but his his end product and lack of consistency can often let him down. If he is to be a success on Merseyside then it is imperative that he works on these aspects of his game.
A number of other new faces are expected to join Bolasie in making the move to Goodison Park before the transfer window is up, with the Daily Mirror reporting that Everton are lining up a sensational swoop for Manchester City and England goalkeeper Joe Hart. The 29-year-old’s exclusion from the City squad that beat Sunderland on Saturday raised many an eyebrow, with Pep Guardiola instead opting to start with Willy Caballero in his first game in charge at the Etihad Stadium.
The report claims that Hart has been told he can leave the club, as long as Guardiola is able to bring in a suitable replacement before the end of the transfer window. The Shrewsbury-born shot stopper joined City in 2006 for £600,000 and is the club’s longest serving player, making 266 Premier League appearances over that time period. However, it looks as though his time in Manchester may now be up, with reports over the weekend claiming that City are in advanced talks to sign Barcelona goalkeeper Claudio Bravo.
The Toffees are not the only club thought to be interested in Hart, with Sevilla also reportedly contemplating making a move for the player. His signature would be a real statement of intent for Everton boss Ronald Koeman as he attempts to further strengthen his squad before the end of the month. One goalkeeper, in the form of Maarten Stekelenburg has already been signed this summer, but the Dutchman is expected to be reserve keeper this season, despite starting in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur.
Should Hart make the move to Goodison Park then Everton will be receiving one of the world’s best goalkeepers; Hart kept 15 Premier League clean sheets last campaign as well as excelling in the Champions League in recent years. He may have made the odd costly mistake over the past few years, including a number of howlers in England’s distastrous Euro 2016 campaign, but the two-time Premier League winner’s goalkeeping heroics have generally outweighed his mistakes, so City’s loss could well be Everton’s gain.
Finally, Sky Sports Italia are reporting that the Blues have had a £21 million bid rejected by Fiorentina for their Croatian striker Nikola Kalinic.
The 28-year-old is no stranger to the Premier League after spending disappointing two seasons at Blackburn Rovers between 2009 and 2011, where he scored just seven Premier League goals in 44 matches. However, since leaving Ewood Park, Kalinic resurrected his career with Dnipro in Ukraine before joining Fiorentina last summer. 13 goals in all competitions during 2015/16 was a respectable return in his first season with La Viola, and has clearly done enough to impress Koeman, if the reports are to be believed.
Unsurprisingly, the Italian club are reluctant to sell their second-top goalscorer from last season as they prepare for their Serie A opener against Juventus next Saturday. Nevertheless, should Kalinic make the move to Merseyside, his time at Blackburn would understandably raise questions about whether he would be a good signing for Everton.
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