Everton must challenge Bournemouth for Kieran Tierney
This week it was reported that Bournemouth have made Celtic defender Kieran Tierney one of their top transfer targets for the summer. Sky Sports suggest that Eddie Howe wants to improve his left-back options and the Scottish international is now their number one target for the position.
But if Bournemouth are going for Tierney, then Everton need to up the ante if they are keen on the player.
Everton need to improve their defensive options. The left-back position, in particular, is a major concern at Goodison Park. When Leighton Baines suffered an injury earlier this season the alarming lack of cover in the position left Cuco Martina filling in admirably.
The fact is, Baines is reaching the latter years of his career and a long-term replacement needs to be sought. Of all the options available to Everton, Tierney could, in fact, be the best.
The Bhoys defender is a similar player to Baines, in that he is a major threat going forward. He will struggle to match the assist record that Baines has had at Everton over the years, but he would certainly be an attacking option.
The main difference between the pair, however, could be that Tierney is better defensively. He has played at centre-back in the past and that may be a reason to consider Tierney something of a Baines upgrade going forward.
Some will dismiss the Scotsman as perhaps not being ready for regular Premier League football. But Everton must look at the success Liverpool have had with Tierney’s countryman Andrew Robertson and realise the Celtic player is worth a chance.
Last summer, a report from the Daily Mail suggested Celtic valued Tierney at £17 million. But after an improvement this season and the signing of a new deal in October, that fee could end up being more.
But Everton have shown they are not afraid to invest in young talent recently and Tierney could be the answer to their left-back problem for many years to come. If Bournemouth are stepping up the chase for the 20-year-old talent, then Everton must make sure they respond.