14 goals last season: Free agent Cheick Diabate could be the answer for Everton

Bordeaux forward Cheikh Diabate controls the ball during the French L1 football match between Bordeaux (FCGB) and Bastia on August 24, 2013, at the Chaban Delmas Stadium in Bordeaux. AFP...

Everton ended the transfer window without the striker they needed.

Bordeaux's French forward Cheick Diabate (L) runs with the ball next to Rennes' French defender Cheikh M Bengue (C) during the French L1 football match Rennes against Bordeaux on November...Cheick Diabate

Despite their best efforts, Everton ended the summer transfer window without the striker they needed so desperately - and that could force manager Ronald Koeman into the free agent market.

The Toffees found a new goalkeeper in Jordan Pickford, strengthened their defence by adding Cuco Martina and Michael Keane, and also added creativity by signing Davy Klaassen, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Wayne Rooney, Nikola Vlasic and Sandro Ramirez.

In a mostly impressive summer transfer window, Everton did miss out on one key addition - the signing of a new striker, which was so important after selling top goalscorer Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United back in July.

Bordeaux' Malian forward Cheikh Diabate gestures during the UEFA Europa League group F football match between Bordeaux and APOEL Nicosia at the Chaban Delmas Stadium in Bordeaux on October...Cheikh Diabate

As reported by the Daily Mail, Everton failed with late bids for the likes of Fernando Llorente, Khouma Babacar, Raul Jimenez, Lucas Perez, Kenneth Zohore and Michy Batshuayi, meaning Ronald Koeman couldn't bring in the striker he wanted.

With the transfer window closed until January, that may just force Koeman to consider free agents to support inexperienced forwards like Ramirez, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Ademola Lookman - but only one really fits the bill.

Malian forward Cheick Diabate is a free agent having cancelled his contract with Turkish side Osmanlispor, and he certainly fits the target man bill that Koeman had set out, possessing great size, strength and aerial ability.

Bordeaux forward Cheikh Diabate controls the ball during the French L1 football match between Bordeaux (FCGB) and Bastia on August 24, 2013, at the Chaban Delmas Stadium in Bordeaux. AFP...Cheikh Diabate

Diabate's record of 66 goals in 152 games for Bordeaux is impressive enough, whilst he even found the net 14 times in 30 games across spells with Osmanlispor and Metz; a strong recent record for a 29-year-old free agent.

With a goal record of around one goal in every two games across the course of his club career, Diabate has scored goals wherever he has been, but is still on the lookout for a new club having only recently been released from his Osmanlispor deal.

He isn't a 'sexy' target for Everton, but he possesses many of the attributes that Koeman is looking for, and is the best of the bunch when it comes to free agents, should the Toffees look for attacking reinforcements outside of the transfer window.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch