Since Steve Walsh took over the Director of Football role at Everton, The Toffees have been targeting some of the most exciting young talents in European football.
The likes of Lille forward Matin Terrier and Turkish starlet Ozancan Kokca have slipped through Everton’s net so far but it appears that the same fate will not befall them with Feyenoord wonderkid Joshua Zirkzee.
According to Football Oranje, the 16-year-old landed in Liverpool on Wednesday to meet with Everton, where he will link up with Dutch coach Ronald Koeman. And Feyenoord are understood to be hugely disappointed at the prospect of losing one of their most exciting talents, with Zirkzee hitting 33 goals for the Under-17s and Under-19s last season.
Koeman may have another talented youngster on his hands
The signing could be a major coup for Everton, not just because they are landing a thrilling youngster from a club who produced the likes of Robin Van Persie, Stefan De Vrij and Gigi Wijnaldum.
On Wednesday morning, The Sun claimed that Arsenal looked to have beaten Eredivisie giants Ajax and PSV to the signature of the sought-after Zirkzee, who only joined Feyenoord from ADO Den Haag a year ago. However, it now appears that Everton have stolen in and will nick Zirkzee from under Arsenal’s nose.
It is unlikely that the 16-year-old will play a major role in Koeman’s immediate first-team plans at Goodison Park, with Zirkzee surely set to feature in the club’s academy squad instead.
Everton won the Premier League B trophy under David Unsworth last season, however, with the likes of Tom Davies and Mason Holgate forcing their way into the senior squad. Zirkzee will hope to follow in their footsteps. An appearance for the clubs under 18s during a Thursday match in Prague, as streamed by the Generali CEE Cup YouTube channel, is certainly an indication a deal could be as good as done.
Robin van Persie joined Arsenal from Feyenoord in 2004 - but Zirkzee won't follow in his footsteps