A detailed assessment of Everton's potential incomings and outgoings this January.
Areas to strengthen
Everton look set for a tricky January in which manager David Moyes will have to box clever if he’s to emerge the other side in as strong a position as he enters it.
They’re reportedly in the market for a goalkeeper to rival Tim Howard as the number one between the sticks, as well as a striker to relieve the burden on Nikica Jelavic and hamstrung new boy Kevin Mirallas.
Other than that, it’s likely any other additions will be drafted in as replacements should they sell a key player.
Birmingham’s Jack Butland will likely be playing in the Premier League this year but Everton will face competition from Liverpool and Southampton if they want England’s newest goalkeeper boy wonder. Birmingham’s cash-flow crisis means a bid of £5 million would be sufficient.
Paris Saint-Germain’s Kevin Gameiro has fallen down the pecking order since the arrival of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and will likely go out on loan for the remainder of the season. However, competition from Liverpool could see Moyes’ plans thwarted.
Club Brugge midfielder Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe is a reported target of Moyes’. The Belgian international apparently signed for the Toffee’s in the summer but FIFA deemed the deal to have been completed after the deadline and subsequently he remained in Belgium.
Marouane Fellaini has been in exquisite form this season (head-butting aside) and the perils of developing a world-class player befall David Moyes’ once again as Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal look to capture him.
Similarly, Leighton Baines has a number of suitors – the usual suspects above, along with Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly sniffing around the English left-back.
Moyes will reported ask for a £20 million advance from next year’s Premier League TV rights plus potential sales of Fellaini and or Baines could means he has a decent size cash-pot for once.
I think it would have to be an offer of more than £25 million to test Moyes’ resolve over Fellaini – he’ll do his utmost to keep him but a hefty fee that could be re-invested in the squad could prove to be a preferable Plan B. If he goes, Odjidja-Ofoe is the obvious replacement.
I think they’ll probably be outbid for Butland and it remains to be seen if they’ll turn their attentions elsewhere for an understudy to Howard.
Gameiro will almost certainly be playing his football on Merseyside in 2013 but the colour of his shirt is still a complete unknown. Everton are placed higher than Liverpool currently but the Reds’ historic reputation may prove to be more alluring.
I think Baines will remain at Goodison until the summer. His situation is similar to Fellaini’s, but I think the Belgian is the more likely departure of the two. Moyes will not be letting both of his big stars go whilst the Toffees are still in contention for European qualification.
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