Everton: €60m striker tracked; Chelsea stumbling over Lukaku; improved bid for 31-year-old
Ronald Koeman has been hectically trying to get deals done and dusted at Goodison Park to bolster his Everton side ahead of the new season, and although the onus has so far been on strengthening up at the back, he is not neglecting the need to freshen up his attacking options either.
According to Portuguese outlet A Bola via the Liverpool Echo, http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/everton-transfer-rumours-porto-star-11707462 Everton are thought to be tracking FC Porto’s Algerian international winger Yacine Brahimi. The 26-year-old is expected to depart the Estadio do Dragao this summer and the Toffees are said to be one of the teams in the hunt for him.
His buy-out clause stands at €60 million, and even with fresh investment the club may be priced out of a deal, though it will be one to observe over the coming days to reveal if there is indeed any realism in the potential of a deal for the Algerian wide-man.
Elsewhere, Koeman and Everton are prepared to further dig their heels in, subject to Chelsea’s interest in Belgium forward Romelu Lukaku by offering their star striker a new and improved £135,000-a-week contract according to the Daily Mirror. http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/everton-offer-romelu-lukaku-new-8564098
The report claims that Chelsea had a bid of £57 million rejected last week, with the Merseysiders slapping a price-tag of £75 million on the head of the 23-year-old. A cash-plus-player deal of £60 million plus Loic Remy was then the talk of the town, but it seems that Everton are sticking to their guns and the new contract offer they are prepared to dish out to their player may be an indication of Koeman’s dissatisfaction at Chelsea’s conduct over their pursuit of the Belgian.
Lukaku is however thought to be open to a move back to Stamford Bridge, citing “unfinished business” at the West London club after the manner of his exit, as well as having a desire to work with their new coach, master tactician Antonio Conte. This may put pain to thoughts that Lukaku would sign a new deal at Goodison, though the club are not letting up for any less than the right price and thus this contract saga rumbles on.
Back on the defensive side of affairs, Koeman and Everton are expected to put in an improved offer for Swansea’s Ashley Williams after their initial £10 million bid for the Wales skipper was turned down earlier in the week. However, if the Daily Mail is to be believed, the Merseyside club are set to ruffle the feathers of the Swans further by poaching one of their transfer targets, Anderlecht’s Senegalese defender Kara Mbodji. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-3713677/Everton-target-Kara-Mbodji-Anderlecht-defender-available-6-2m.html
The Senegalese has a buy-out clause of £6.25 million with the Belgian club, which expires in the next 24 hours. With Williams continually linked with the Toffees, Swansea would be set to sign the player as a replacement for their outgoing captain, but Everton may be keen to hijack the deal and bring in the defender as a cheap alternative to Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly, Mbodji’s Senegal teammate who would cost £40 million to sign from the Serie A club.
Though as well as Swansea, old Toffees boss David Moyes is in the market for the defender according to the report as he looks to strengthen his rear-guard at Sunderland, and with the player’s cut-price buyout clause expiring in less than a day, it would certainly be a frantic race against time for any of the three clubs to complete a deal, so this transfer battle may well be one to watch.
Another Senegalese currently at Everton in Oumar Niasse, may now not be leaving the club after all despite not receiving a shirt number for the new 2016/17 Premier League season.
The 26-year-old has barely figured in any of Everton’s pre-season preparations and now HITC Sport reports that Sporting Lisbon, a club linked with bringing in the forward, have rubbished any supposed interest in the forward. Although Besiktas, Fenerbahce and Hamburg are all considering a move according to the report, the Everton flop will be staying at Goodison for the time being at least. http://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2016/08/03/report-four-clubs-eye-move-for-everton-flop-oumar-niasse/
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