The Daily Mail claim Everton are competing with Crystal Palace to try and sign Aston Villa midfielder Marvelous Nakamba.
Rafa Benitez is supposedly keen to add to his central midfield ranks at Everton and according to the Mail views the 27-year-old Zimbabwe international as the man to do just that.
He’s facing competition from another club with a new manager at the helm, as Crystal Palace’s new boss Patrick Viera is also said to be interested in Nakamba.
This link is slightly suprising as at least on paper you could argue the Blues have enough defensive midfield options in the current squad.
The Toffees have Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure plus Tom Davies and now a fully fit Jean-Philippe Gbamin, which would in theory seem enough options.
However, Allan is injury-prone and over 30, Davies is in truth a limited player who might well move on if a decent bid comes in for him and of course Gbamin’s fitness has been an almost comical disaster since he signed for Everton in summer 2019.
Although Gbamin looks in good nick at the moment and hopefully all those terrible injury problems are a thing of the past, given that history no one can be sure he won’t break down again.
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So Benitez might well be thinking that he needs another energetic, defensive midfielder to suppliment those players and the team probably does need more bite and workrate in midfield.
Well Nakamba could provide that as he is well-suited to a dynamic defensive role and he has proved an effective addition to Villa’s side, although he’s had limited first-team opportunities recently.
And let’s not forget the last time the Blues signed an African international midfield ball-winner from Villa it proved one of the most astute deals the Toffees have made in a long time. That player was of course Idrissa Gueye.
Gueye was a key player in the Everton teams of Ronald Koeman, who signed him and Marco Silva.
And in fact the Blues have never adequately replaced his energy, commitment and workrate since he left for PSG.
While I think the Toffees have other more pressing transfer priorities like getting a new right-back and finding another striker to support Dominic Calvert-Lewin, if Nakamba is available for a very reasonable fee and can be as effective in the middle of the park as Gueye was, then he would prove a very astute addition.