It’s a bit of a quandary for the CEO and his Board at Everton at the moment. Time after time Moshiri and his team have seen targets come into their sights. On most occasions those players have got bigger contracts with their clubs or moved somewhere else.
Of course it could just be the press and agents talking utter nonsense a lot of the time, culminating in the players getting richer as they laugh at us, the fans.
So do Everton, who have started well with three wins and a draw from their first four competitive games, start spending silly money? It would certainly fit the wishes it would seem of Moshiri, who would like a big signing to come into the club. The unfortunate thing is that now we have lots of money we can’t just bully people as per Chelsea 2004 or Man City 2008. We have money but so does everyone else. We might have more, but the players can go to Champions League or London-based clubs for stupid money anyway.
We might need to be a bit more clever about this and it appears that Koeman already has put his stamp onto the team. We already look more organised, focused, slightly fitter and more determined than last season. Ask Everton fans what they want in their team and most will say it will be less about pretty football and more about blood, guts, determination and booting Ronaldo-types into the stands. A lot of effort from players goes a long way at Goodison.
Talking of which, does beating Stoke City and their Nan-headed manager get any better than a disputed (wrong) penalty that is saved by the keeper and goes in off his head? Lovely stuff. Good to see Baines back on pennos too, even if he did miss/score it.
So who could the players be that come into the club before Wednesday night? Well we’ll be moving on certain players such as Niasse, who has been linked to Turkey but also other Premier League clubs (*snort*), so we’ll need a forward player. We might want another defender to come in as Koeman says we need four centre backs. We might also want a central midfielder to replace James McCarthy who he doesn’t seem to rate. Shame, as he started with us so well.
The talk about Joe Hart seems to have died down too. Whilst we will probably bring in a goalie it will be as a backup it appears. Koeman has publicly said that his number 1 this season will be the seemingly-steady Stekelenberg so any thoughts of spending big money on loan fees and then £140k a week on a fragile goalie from City could be on the back burner. That’s the sort of deal I’d expect us to do next Summer perhaps if we can sneak into Europe, but for now it seems to be off the agenda.
Just seen that Hart is off to Torino. No idea why. Apparently he wants to play abroad and… oh, hang on, his other option was Sunderland. Fair enough.
The value for players seems to be overseas and we are again being linked with a £21m bid for Manolo Gabbiadini of Napoli. Of course those of us of a certain age shudder at the thought of this due to our memories of the ex-Aston Villa player, but apparently he’s ‘quite good’. And we did worry about another Gueye arriving at Goodison didn’t we? How wrong were we about that one?
This fella is 24 years old, has not played for Italy for a year and is a winger/forward. Napoli signed him from Sampdoria for £10.2m in January 2015 and he’s scored 20 goals for them. The Chaiman of Napoli wants him to stay but I can imagine we’re prepared to make him very rich.
We also seem very keen on Yacine Brahimi of Porto, who would cost a similar amount. I’d prefer Islam Slamini to be honest, but tat’s based on the fact I’ve seen him play. He seems to dribble a lot and do unpredictable things. Didn’t we get told that Niasse was the same?
The problem with these deals is that Everton don’t appear to be very good at doing this business in private. We just know that the player is perhaps waiting for a better deal from someone in Italy or a bigger wage at Napoli itself. Every time these deals drag on we tend to lose out.
All in all it’ll be an interesting day tomorrow. We might end up without anyone and, you know, I’d be okay with that. Koeman is looking to get the best out of his players with a new system and the next few months will allow him to properly make decisions about who should stay and who should go. Splashing out money on a complete unknown might undo some of that or take money away from a future budget.
Funnily enough I held a Twitter poll on @evertoniansclub yesterday and a third of people said they’d take Daniel Sturridge from the RS (with 40% saying they wouldn’t as they don’t want a RS cast off!). Interesting option?
Saying that, a last minute signing for a big name or waking up to the news we’ve signed someone utterly unknown to most of us (thinking Fellaini-type random) would be ace.