Everton have made an enquiry about £18 million-rated Marash Kumbulla, according to Gazzetta dello Sport, with Carlo Ancelotti’s Toffees tipped to hijack Inter Milan’s deal for the rising defensive star of Italian football.
You might be surprised to learn that a 19-year-old Albanian is one of the hottest prospects in the game today. But, on the back of some colossal performances at the heart of Hellas Verona’s back line, Kumbulla has clubs all over the continent casting admiring glances in his direction.
Goal reports that none other than Serie A champions Juventus have shown an interest in a classy centre-half who combines a supreme passing range with an ability to man-mark even the sharpest strikers out of the game.
Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan, sitting just two points behind Juve in the table, held talks with Kumbulla on Tuesday with the teenager a perfect fit for the Nerazzuri’s three-man defence.
Everton, then, face one hell of a challenge as they look to beat Italy’s top two in the race, though the presence of a legendary coach in the Goodison Park dugout could give the Merseysiders hope that a deal can be done.
The towering, 6ft 1ins Kumbulla will cost £18 million – a fee that majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri would not struggle to afford. And, if Goodison is his destination, Kumbulla would be tasked with forcing his way into the Everton XI with neither Yerry Mina nor Michael Keane managing to silence the doubters.
With Inter and Juve making moves, this represents a clear test of Ancelotti’s pulling power. But the chance to work under a three-time Champions League-winning coach who has lifted titles at Real Madrid, Chelsea, PSG, Bayern Munich and AC Milan surely makes Everton a far more attractive destination these days.
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