Premier League giants Everton failed with an eleventh hour bid for Matheus Cunha ahead of his £26 million move to Spanish champions Atletico Madrid, as reported by Sky Germany.
Football really is the most fickle of mistresses.
Just a few weeks ago, Everton’s transfer business was being framed as underwhelming at best, downright awful at worst.
A combined £1.7 million spent on Asmir Begovic, Andros Townsend and Demarai Gray failed to win over supporters already sceptical about the appointment of Rafa Benitez.
But look at things differently and, in Begovic, Everton have signed a proven Premier League goalkeeper for nothing.
England international Townsend, meanwhile, marked his Toffees debut with an assist in last week’s 3-1 victory over Southampton.
And if Saturday’s blistering performance against Leeds United is anything to go by, Demarai Gray could be one of the most inspired bargains on this side of Stanley Park since Tim Cahill swapped Millwall for Merseyside.
Furthermore, having beefed up Benitez’s squad with a couple of cut-price additions, Everton still have plenty of funds burning a hole in their back pocket as we enter the final seven days of the transfer window.
Everton missed out on Cunha but still require a marquee signing
Eight-figure bids have been launched for Lazio winger Joaquin Correa and Rangers starlet Nathan Patterson – albeit without success – while Everton also made a late play for Olympic gold medallist Cunha.
According to Sky, however, Everton have failed to break an agreement between Cunha and La Liga winners Atletico Madrid.
Diego Simeone’s side are on the verge of sealing a £26 million deal for the Hertha Berlin forward, a supremely gifted if inconsistent talent, with a medical expected to take place this week.
“He has a deadly shot, you can never stop him, and he has incredible acceleration,” former Inter Milan ace Paolo Tramezzani said about Cunha last year.
“He is an extraordinary boy. A hard worker with a great desire to improve, always focused and on the game. He is very mature from this point of view.
“He could be like (Samuel) Eto’o.”
With Cunha out of reach and Lazio standing firm on Correa it remains to be seen whether Everton turn their attention to Benitez’s former Napoli ace Lorenzo Insigne instead.