Report: Mangala was Everton's second choice after Soumaoro

Sam Allardyce, Manager of Everton looks on prior to the Premier League match between Everton and Leicester City at Goodison Park on January 31, 2018 in Liverpool, England.

Everton have signed centre-back Eliaquim Mangala on loan from Premier League rivals Manchester City but wanted Lille's Adama Soumaoro instead.

City player Eliaquim Mangala reacts during the Premier League match between Manchester City and West Ham United at Etihad Stadium on December 3, 2017 in Manchester, England.

If Sam Allardyce had his way, Eliaquim Mangala might not be preparing himself for six months at Everton.

As reported by the BBC, the Toffees completed the signing of the French centre-back from Manchester City on a loan deal until the end of the season.

Mangala had shown signs of improvement in the last few months under Pep Guardiola, albeit not managing to show why City paid Porto £32 million for him in 2014. But the club-record signing of Athletic Bilbao’s Aymeric Laporte forced Mangala out of Manchester and towards Merseyside.

But according to La Voix da Nord, Mangala was not Everton’s first choice.

Bright Enobakhare of Wolverhampton Wanderers and Eliaquim Mangala of Manchester City battle for the ball during the Carabao Cup Fourth Round match between Manchester City and Wolverhampton...

It is understood that the Toffees only moved to sign the former Valencia loanee once it became clear that their long-running attempts to bring Adama Soumaoro to Goodison Park from Lille were doomed.

It is understood that Everton made a £19 million bid for the 25-year-old. But with Lille in genuine danger of relegation, owner Gerard Lopez understandably did not want to sell any of his key players.

Lille's French defender Adama Soumaoro (L) vies with Olympique de Marseille's French midfielder Remy Cabella during the French L1 football match between Lille OSC (LOSC) and Marseille on...

This will have come as a blow to Everton, who sent chief scout Martyn Glover and director of football Steve Walsh to watch Soumaoro in person late in January.

So the Toffees will be hopeful that Mangala can perform like he has done for the last few months at City rather than regressing into the bumbling, error-prone centre-back who flopped badly in his early years at the Etihad Stadium.

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