It looks like being a quiet transfer window for Everton. After spending big in the summer the Toffees are prepared to wait until the summer to secure their big targets and continue building what they hope will be a successful unit under Marco Silva and Marcel Brands.
However, one deal that was done late last week should have Everton fans very excited. After weeks of speculation and interest from rival clubs, Everton announced that young defender Ryan Astley has signed a professional deal at Goodison Park. He has committed to Everton until 2021 and will continue to develop his talent at Finch Farm.
The Welsh talent is just 17 but is already a regular in David Unsworth’s under-23 side. It would be fair to say that Unsworth is excited about this young prodigy.
He has spoken on numerous occasions about his ability and it appears Everton have a star in the making.
Capable at right-back but far better suited at centre-half he is your typical modern-day defender. Composed on the ball and with an eye for a pass, comparisons with former Everton talent John Stones should not be underestimated.
“I’m so proud of him. He made his debut (for the Under-23s) last season when he was still playing at under-16 level, which is not heard of.
“He’s come into the group, he’s playing out of position at right-back – he’s a centre-back really – and he’s been terrific. He was excellent.”
As Stones did, he is cutting his teeth at right-back for now but the heart of defence will be his home for years to come.
Astley has the ability to go on and become a future Everton star. Stones, of course, went on to join Manchester City for £47.5 million in 2016. If Astley can reach that level of competence than Everton have a sensation on their hands.