Everton rival Arsenal and Real Madrid for emerging Spanish midfielder

Everton is set to rival Arsenal and Real Madrid for Espanyol midfielder Marc Roca.

According to Spanish media outlet La Razon, Espanyol midfielder Marc Roca is a wanted man in England, Spain and Italy. In England, Arsenal and Everton are said to be keeping tabs on the emerging talent whereas Serie A giants AC Milan are aiming to sign the Spaniard in the summer transfer window. Real Madrid too is tracking Marc Roca’s development as they continue to stash their midfield with top talents.

Even though Espanyol have had a season to forget as they are most likely to succumb to relegation. The 20th placed team in the La Liga table has managed to win just 4 games out of 27 so far but there are some individual performers that have stood out and Marc Roca is one of them. The 23 year old is a smart midfielder who averages 2.4 tackles and 1.1 interceptions in 90 minutes of a La Liga game. Considering that Espanyol plays on the back foot and allow the opposition to have most of the ball, his defensive stats show how adept he is in the central defensive midfield position. He is also one of the most accurate passers in his team with expertise in launching long balls forward. 4.7 long balls attest for the above argument (stats via whoscored).

Real Madrid thinks of the Espanyol youth academy product as the heir to Casemiro but Los Blancos prioritize Stade Rennais’ Eduardo Camavinga over Roca. Arsenal are mulling over their options in central midfield as the loan move of Dani Ceballos hasn’t worked out. Roca presents a good option to be a squad player for the Gunners. AC Milan’s Lucas Biglia is entering final phases of his career and the Rossoneri are viewing the 23 year old Spaniard as a possible successor.

Meanwhile, Everton seem to be the most likely fit for the defensive midfielder. Jean-Philippe Gbamin’s Everton career has crash-landed before it could take off and Morgan Schneiderlin isn’t trusted by Carlo Ancelotti. Espanyol’s asking price of €40 million may bum out the Toffees but with the Spanish side unlikely to avoid relegation, Espanyol would be forced to soften their stance.

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Is Marc Roca a viable option for the Toffees?