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Everton transfer: Toffees reportedly set to beat Crystal Palace to Bundesliga player

Rafa Benitez is edging close to his first signing as Everton boss, with Demarai Gray set to return to the Premier League, according to Fabrizio Romano.

The Toffees are going to beat Crystal Palace to the winger’s signature. Gray will return to the Premier League just six months after he departed to join Bayer Leverkusen.

The 25-year-old has struggled in the Bundesliga. He has made just 12 appearances for Leverkusen scoring once and claiming two assists.

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Now it seems as though the German outfit are prepared to cut their losses on the player, with Everton ready to pounce.

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Benitez will be keen to bolster his ranks ahead of the new campaign getting underway. Given his former ties with Liverpool, the Spaniard will want to get off to a strong start.

Gray is a Premier League winner having helped Leicester claim the title in 2016. He will now hope to set the bar high in his new venture with Everton, provided the deal goes through.

The talks between Gray and Everton look to be in the advanced stages, with the Toffees pipping Palace to the post.

Back in the early stages of his Leicester career, he won praise from Gary Lineker. He called him ‘excellent’ and ‘one hell of a player‘ after a game against Oxford in the cup.

Gray to Everton: Underwhelming signing won’t appease the Toffees fan base

Last summer, Everton landed James Rodriguez, Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure. It’s fair to say that the addition of Gray won’t quite get the juices flowing as those three did.

The former Foxes star wasn’t a bad player in the Premier League, although he left Leicester having scored 13 goals and claimed 17 assists in 169 appearances.

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Everton endured a disappointing second half of last season and that robbed them of a place in European competition.

Benitez has to put that right and the jury will remain out over whether or not Gray is the man to revive the club’s fortunes next season.

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