Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Wendel has completed a £22 million move to Zenit St Petersburg after Carlo Ancelotti tried to lure the Brazilian midfielder to Goodison Park, as reported by Transfer Nexus.

Shortly before it became clear Napoli were open to offers for Allan, the Toffees boss had identified another Brazilian ball-winner as an alternative to his former Stadio San Paolo favourite.

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According to EMN, Ancelotti held talks with Wendel over the phone at the start of the summer in an attempt to lure the 23-year-old from Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon.

Everton, as they have throughout the Italian’s tenure, backed their legendary boss to the hilt, offering Wendel a five-year contract.

But once Everton got a whiff of Allan’s availability, their attention shifted from the 23-year-old former Fluminense enforcer.

Wendel, meanwhile, was forced to settle for a move to Russia.

However, he can at least console himself with the glitz and glamour of Champions League football. Zenit will pit their wits against Dortmund, Lazio and Belgian champions Club Brugge in Europe’s premiere club competition.

In a deal that could eventually rise to £22 million, Zenit agreed to make Wendel the biggest signing by any Russian club this year.

Then again, with Allan looking every inch the Idrissa Gana Gueye replacement Everton were crying out for last season, no-one at Goodison Park will be rueing their failure to get Wendel over the line.

Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

Everton’s opening fixtures of the 2020/21 season

  1. Tottenham (A)

    September 12

  2. West Brom (H)

    September 19

  3. Crystal Palace (A)

    September 26

  4. Brighton (H)

    October 3

  5. Liverpool (H)

    October 17

  6. Southampton (A)

    October 26

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