Everton are perhaps the only team to have reaped instant fruits from their winter transfers and it has also kept the team in high spirits. It was the depth in their squad and quality on the bench that led Everton to get the all-important goal against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
After bolstering the attack and the midfield, it is the back line, which Koeman is looking to solidify now. Unlike their attack and midfield, where Everton have sufficient players to bring change to their gameplay, their defence lacks real quality.
Especially their centre-halves, which lacks any quality backup at the moment. Koeman used all his three first-choice centre-backs against Crystal Palace and with the only option left in Phil Jagielka on the bench, it pretty much sums up their lack of quality in that role.
While the Toffees have some exciting players in the side-back position, they seem to be in a dire need of a leadership material who would keep the team together from the back, like Chelsea have in David Luiz, Arsenal in Koscielny and Liverpool in Matip.
With Phil Jagielka, the only ideal option in that role, falling down the pecking order and now seems to be heading out of Goodison Park, Koeman is looking to bring in to fill the void and he has some very interesting prospects to consider.
They are linked with Chelsea’s old general Branislav Ivanovic, who could take up the task from Jagielka or as reports indicate, Koeman should opt for Burnley sensation Michael Keane. According to The Sun, after missing out on Sunderland’s Lamine Kone and Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk, Koeman is now planning to table a bid for Keane.
The former Manchester United player has been a rock at the back for the Clarets this season. The England international has won 57% of his average duels with a passing accuracy of 75%. The 6ft 3inch defender started on the right early in his career and has now developed into a natural centre-half. Keane was in the team that won the FA Youth Cup with Lingard and Pogba.
And he played a quintessential role in their draw with Manchester United last year where United couldn’t break Burnley’s defence even with 37 attempts. Keane excels in his timely tackles and can provide some perfect passes up front from the deep. With a poacher like Lukaku up front, he could be an invaluable asset for Everton.
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