Everton look likely to beat Premier League rivals to Ligue 1’s Lille star Adama Soumaoro, and this could have ramifications for Ashley Williams’ future.

The chances of Adama Soumaoro still being at cash-strapped Ligue 1 strugglers Lille by the end of the month seem decidedly remote.

The 2011 league champions could be forced to sell their prize asset and there is no shortage of interest in a player who has suddenly emerged as one of the French top flight’s most in-demand defenders.

Sky Sports stated earlier in the month that West Ham were interested in Soumaoro, with Hammers manager David Moyes keen to build the club’s revival upon a sturdy defence.

But Moyes’ former club, Everton, now look the most likely destination. The Sun (January 22nd, page 50) report that The Toffees sent director of football Steve Walsh and chief scout Martin Glover to watch Soumaoro in action for Lille in midweek, only for the versatile defender to miss the home defeat to Rennes with injury.

But the report adds that this has not stopped Everton pushing ahead with the pursuit of the as-yet uncapped Frenchman.

It is understood that Everton are likely to make an approach for the £18 million-rated Soumaoro. And his signing could pave the way for a departure.

Soumaoro would arrive at Goodison Park to give Everton’s defence some much needed youth, and his arrival would likely lead to Ashley Williams being offloaded.

The Welsh international’s form has declined rapidly in recent months, with his dismal season characterised by a whole host of hitherto uncharacteristic mistakes.

And The Sun state that Williams could be offloaded if Soumaoro joins. Which is probably one step in the right direction for Everton.

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