Is Scott Dann a better fit than Ashley Williams for Everton?
After the appointment of Ronald Koeman as manager, there was optimism at Goodison Park, but they have since suffered many setbacks in the transfer market. They are trying to bring in at least one experienced Premier League centre-back, with Scott Dann and Ashley Williams among their list of targets. Both of whom have been standout defenders over the last few seasons, but they possess different qualities.
The club saw a £10m bid turned down for Ashley Williams this week and could be set to turn their attentions to Scott Dann. The Crystal Palace defender was a target for the club last summer, but he signed a new five-year contract instead, ending the possibility of a move to Merseyside. A year has now passed and a deal could appeal more to Dann, especially as Palace regressed in terms of league position. The project at Everton is an exciting one and provides the opportunity to work with a very good defensive coach in Ronald Koeman.
Scott Dann looks to be a much better option for Everton than Ashley Williams for a number of reasons. To begin with, Williams has already peaked and last season, he began to show signs of regressing. Furthermore, both Swansea and Wales struggled from set pieces. The two have one major thing in common and that is having Ashley Williams in the heart of defence.
Williams is a born leader and a great character to have around the dressing room, but £10m+ is a big investment in a player turning 32 this month. A move for Dann makes a lot more sense. The Palace defender is likely to cost more than Williams with the Mirror stating Everton may have to stump up £15m to convince the South London side to sell.
In terms of age, Dann is younger at 29 and is in the peak years of his career. Many regular watchers of Palace will testify to his ability, which has put him on the verge of an England call-up. He is a tough centre-back, who is great in the air in both boxes. As opposed to Williams, Dann is an asset when it comes to defending set pieces. He also regularly chips in with goals at the other end and has progressed a lot since arriving at Palace.
Since moving to Selhurst Park for £6m, Dann has emerged as one of the most accomplished centre-backs in the division. Alan Pardew has talked about him being the best centre-back he has worked with, which is a big compliment. He is regarded as a model professional and has shown leadership qualities at Selhurst Park.
Although his strengths lie in the air, he is good on the ball and capable of using his feet if required. He is well rounded and his ball playing skills have developed a lot in recent years. Everton have a leader at the back in Phil Jagielka and Dann would be a good complement to him.
John Stones is expected to leave for a big fee this month and the need for one or two more centre backs is clear. There will be funds to do it, which makes a move for Dann possible. It is clear that he is well liked by the powers that be at Everton and he would provide a proven quality at the back. He has been one of the best in the division over the last couple of years and would improve Everton. Under Ronald Koeman, he could get even better and for £15m, he is a player worth pursuing.
Everton’s search for a centre back is starting to pick up speed after they lodged an offer for Ashley Williams. It is not known whether they will return with an increased offer, but if they don’t, Dann would be an excellent alternative.
Featured image – All rights reserved by sebastianfrej.