So the Premier League are now taking concrete steps to prepare for the return of the 2019-20 season as Everton and the other 19 clubs get ready to resume training this week.
It’s going to be very interesting to see how quickly players can get back to something approaching match-fitness, after such a prolonged hiatus due to the coronavirus lockdown.
In fact there has never been a situation like this where teams have such a long break more than halfway through a season, even a winter break doesn’t quite match this.
This shutdown took place when players and teams were approaching their maximum levels of fitness after two thirds of the season, and were gearing up mentally and physically for the final push towards the season end.
Of course no amount of work on the training pitch can replicate the demands of a full-blooded Premier League match, especially if it’s non-contact, but at least players can now properly begin to get ready for the return of the league after such a long suspension.
It’s still not entirely certain when exactly the Premier League will be officially starting, there is still some doubt about that. But it does look probable that it will be sometime in early or mid-June.
In today’s transfer news, Everton are supposedly tracking the the young Saint Etienne winger Denis Bouanga.
According to this story, which has it’s genesis in the UK papers, the Toffees are considering a move for the Gabon player who might be available for a cut-price fee.
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Bouanga, has had a fine season in the French top flight and at 25 he is approaching his potential peak. He has scored 10 goals and four assists so far in Ligue 1.
The Gabon attacker, tends to play wide on the left, although he can also play right across the midfield including on the right wing, where the Blues need the most improvement.
Bouanga does seem to have some attacking quality and might be able to contribute to shoring up the Toffees defence out wide too, plus according to these reports he would be available for a very low fee of around £10 million.
Personally, regardless of whether as usual there is anything in this rumour, I’m not sure whether he would adapt well to English football and if indeed this season is merely an exceptional one among mainly mediocre campaigns.