Everton have Steven Nzonzi on their radar.
The idea of strengthening the midfield dominates Carlo Ancelotti’s thoughts at the moment. Despite the arrival of Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure in the summer, the midfield lacks reliable depth as Tom Davies and Andre Gomes’ displays remain turbulent. The file of Sami Khedira attracts Ancelotti’s attention with the Juventus outcast open to a Premier League move.
However, he’s not the only name Everton are looking at. AS Roma midfielder, Steven Nzonzi, currently on loan at Stade Rennais, is also on Everton’s radar, as per Foot Mercato. Arsenal continues to track him too. Nzonzi is enjoying a leading role at Rennais after being loaned by Roma last year in January.
The Frenchman was an important member of Rennais’ season as the club secured the third spot in the table and qualified for the UEFA Champions League. His fruitful exploits with the French club has made him consider a longer stay at Roazhon Park. The report mentions that Nzonzi is working to mutually terminate his contract with Roma as Stade Rennais ponder on offering him an extension.
Can Steven Nzonzi be an alternative to Sami Khedira?
The idea to return to the Premier League could be too tempting for the 32 year old to refuse. Nzonzi spent six seasons in England with Blackburn Rovers and Stoke City. Everton will be hunting for a midfielder who can add experience and provide rigid support to the midfield.
More from Prince Rupert's Tower
Nzonzi and Khedira have similar profiles and orchestrate a similar role but Nzonzi is much more physically dominant. The Frenchman can sit in front of the defence or even play in a slightly forward role. Many often fail to recognize his underrated attacking instincts, capable of breaking the play and making that killer pass or a long ball to initiate the attack.
Nzonzi is comfortable in a two man central midfield pivot, fitting perfectly in Everton’s current shape of 4-2-3-1. Now, the idea is not to replace Doucoure or Allan but to cover for either of them in their absence and the Frenchman can carry out either of the roles.
Khedira hasn’t played a game since June whereas Nzonzi has remained in the mix constantly. Should Nzonzi terminate his contract with Roma, he too would be available on a free transfer. However, Rennais want to keep him so it all depends on the desire of Nzonzi whether he wants to return to England and can Everton be his next club.
But, if Nzonzi is available, the Toffees must push for him instead of Khedira simply based on the versatility he offers and more importantly he’s match fit.