Everton will be in the market for a defensive midfielder. Fabian Delph’s deal runs out in the summer and Allan has been linked with an exit. The Toffees have been previously linked to Sporting midfielder Joao Palhinha and those links could emerge again this summer.
Now in the summer transfer window, perhaps the area that needs the most attention after central defence is midfield. The Toffees need a reliable defensive midfielder who can carry out the job and most importantly remain fit and not fall prey to niggles and knocks.
With Everton scanning the transfer market for a defensive mid, the name of Palhinha appears again on the radar. The 26 year old was linked with the Toffees last summer but he stayed with the Portuguese club.
Everton mentioned as a team interested in Joao Palhinha
This summer, it seems that his exit is almost certain. That is according to Portuguese outlet Record (via Sport Witness), which mentions that Palhinha will not stay with Sporting next season and clubs are lining up to sign the player.
In the Premier League, Everton face competition from Leicester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Wolves. Atletico Madrid and PSG also remain in the race to sign the 26 year old. With a number of clubs enquiring and showing interest in the Portugal international, Sporting may not be able to stop these advances and will eventually yield to a sale.
Palhinha has a release clause of €60 million but it is almost given that no club will be willing to pay that astronomical amount. Instead, the Lions will give a hefty discount on the release clause and accept offers in the region of €25 million.
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Now, competing with the likes of Atletico Madrid, Spurs and PSG means that Everton can often end up losing the player but in this case, the Toffees may have a trick up their sleeve that they can use. Sporting is fond of goalkeeper Joao Virginia who spent the season on loan at the Portuguese club.
The Toffees could use him to sweeten the deal and further bring down the asking price. The Lions want Virginia but do not want to meet the €5 million clause in his deal. If Palhinha is seriously being considered, Virginia could be a makeweight in the deal. However, all of this is just speculation until there is some concrete evidence that suggests that Everton wants to sign the 26 year old Sporting midfielder to Goodison Park.
Will Joao Palhinha sign for Everton?