Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Everton Want This Two-Time Premier League Winner: Why Koeman Should Go For It

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Snehanjan Banerjee
Snehanjan used to a former columnist at The 4th Official. Fan of KK, Cricket and Liverpool (in no particular order).

Everton, after experiencing a long-held mediocrity, appointed Ronald Koeman as the manager in the summer of 2016 after parting ways with Roberto Martinez but have not seen an immediate impact. The Toffees look much improved when compared to the last few seasons but they still lack the consistency needed to bid for a European place. Well, the project has just started and it is still early days. The fans must show patience in the manager and the hierarchy.

Everton aren’t short of intent and have the financial power now with billionaire Farhad Moshiri being the major stakeholder of the club. We can expect some big transfers from the Merseyside club in the upcoming transfer windows but this one is too big to digest! The Daily Star claims that Everton are hot on the tail of Manchester United defender Chris Smalling and are looking to make a January move for the English international.

Smalling was an integral part of the Manchester United squad before Jose Mourinho took over in the summer but since the arrival of the Portuguese manager, Smalling has lost his place in the team although he has also struggled with injury problems. For the first time since the Red Devils’ 4-0 loss to Chelsea, the 27-year-old played a full 90 minutes in the Premier League in the 2-1 win against Manchester United on Saturday.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 24: Chris Smalling of Manchester United (L) attempts to keep the ball while under pressure from Islam Slimani of Leicester City (R) during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Leicester City at Old Trafford on September 24, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Manchester United are reportedly looking to bolster their defence in January and even if they fail to do so in the winter transfer window, Mourinho will certainly bring in a new central defender in the summer. The likes of Jones, Rojo and Bailey have all done quite well this season while Smalling was having an injury-plagued season and it is quite clear that Mourinho is not the biggest fan of the Englishman. This could be Everton’s big opportunity to land the defensive man mountain.

Everton are short of options at the heart of the defence. Phil Jagielka is at the dusk of his career and is struggling for both fitness and form this season. Ashley Williams has not managed to impress at all since his summer move to Everton while Ramiro Funes Mori is clearly not a player with whom Everton can reach the next level. Young Mason Holgate has impressed when given a chance but he is way too young.

The experience Smalling possesses at the highest level will be an invaluable addition to Everton. He is only 27 years of age and could be a long-term leader of the back-four at Goodison Park. The Englishman is brilliant in their air and has brilliant ability to pick out a pass from the back, exactly what Koeman likes. If Everton can manage to lure Smalling away from Old Trafford, it could prove to be one hell of a deal for them.

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