According to The Sun, Valencia forward Rodrigo Moreno is keen on returning to England. As a result, Premier League clubs, including Everton, are on red alert as Marco Silva looks to bolster his side’s attacking department this summer. However, the Toffees could face stiff competition from West Ham United in the pursuit of Rodrigo, who is likely to cost around £30 million, though Valencia could initially ask for £70 million.
Rodrigo’s impressive spell at Valencia
Rodrigo permanently joined Valencia way back in 2015 in a €30 million move from SL Benfica after initially impressing on loan, the previous season. However, the Spaniard struggled with injuries and lack of game-time throughout the 2015/16 and 2016/17 campaign, scoring only seven combined goals during those two seasons.
But, the 28-year-old enjoyed a productive 2017/18 campaign, where he scored 16 goals and provided seven assists, helping Valencia finish fourth in the league table. And although Rodrigo wasn’t as productive last season, he still plundered eight goals and mustered six assists, which played a critical role in Los Che‘s Champions League qualification in the upcoming season.
What can Rodrigo bring to the table?
Rodrigo is an unconventional centre forward, who tends to drop deep and pick up balls from midfield. He has excellent close control and is capable of finding passing options in and around the final third. His unconventionality, coupled with his work-ethic probably justifies the lack of productivity in his scoring tally throughout the majority of his career.
As you would expect from any player nurtured under the influence of Spanish football, Rodrigo is a technically astute striker. He can carve out the opposition defence playing quick one-twos with his teammates that becomes very effective especially when breaching a defensively rigid opposition.
The 28-year-old is also adept in beating defenders while his excellent shielding ability allows him additional time and space with the ball – making him an effective centre-forward.
Why should Everton make a move for Rodrigo?
It’s probably needless to point out Everton’s lack of goalscoring options upfront. Star striker Cenk Tosun is reportedly ready to leave the club while the young Dominic Calvert-Lewin hasn’t been able to find the back of the net consistently, thus accentuating the need for a new striker.
Rodrigo, in that regard, could be an ideal fit. The Spaniard is a versatile attacker, and his work-ethic could tune in well with Silva’s tactical philosophy at the Goodison Park. He could also allow Richarlison to continue at his preferred wing role and this is coupled with his previous exposure in English football, having spent a year at Bolton Wanderers back in 2010.
And after signing Andre Gomes from Barcelona, the addition of someone like Rodrigo could serve as a statement for the other clubs.
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