The smartest £40m ever made: Everton board deserve credit for sales

Selling players for a combined £40 million does not usually get the fans onside, unless you are Everton.

Arsenal fans will testify that selling player 'assets' in the region of £40 million does not make a happy recipe for success.

Everton supporters on the other hand may be able to offer a different perspective.

Yesterday they closed the sale of Nikica Jelavic to Hull City, a striker who had not scored a single Premier League goal all season.

Officially the fee is undisclosed, although it is believed to be in the region of £5.5 million potentially rising to £7.5 million.

It is the third player sale which has left fans smiling, and even if the Croatian goes onto rediscover his lethal touch, Everton can be happy with the options they currently possess.

The club also sold striker Victor Anichebe in the summer, for a staggering £6 million.

After an injury hit few seasons the Nigerian striker showed signs of coming back to form last year, bagging six goals and providing six assists in the league. That was enough to convince West Brom to take a punt on him.

Six months into the season and Anichebe has not yielded much return for the Baggies. He has just one league goal and one assist, and the manager who signed him Steve Clarke has been fired.

Another hoping the same fate does not befall him is former Everton boss David Moyes. The new Manchester United manager had a summer transfer window to forget, but thought he had rescued it when he signed Marouane Fellaini for £27.5 million.

The Belgian's time at Old Trafford has been a failure so far, and while too early to write him off, he has it all to prove. Fellaini is yet to start a Premier League game this season and end up on the winning side.

Everton have accrued around £40 million over the sales of these three players, and are no worse off for it on the pitch.

While there are gaps to be filled up front when Romelu Lukaku and Gerard Deulofeu return to their parent clubs from their loan spells at the end of the season, manage Roberto Martinez was clear that Nikica Jelavic would never really be his first choice.

The Spaniard can now take his time in assessing potential new signings for the summer, and hope he will be given a sizeable portion of the transfer money to spend.

With Champions League football still an achievable goal heading into the final months of the season, life is looking positive for Everton, and the reinforcement of the view the club is being sensibly and smartly run only makes them more and more of an example for others to attempt to emulate. 

image: © rolando.m

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