Everton Plotting A Move For This Serie A Full-Back: What Will He Bring To Goodison Park?

MILAN, ITALY - AUGUST 03: Ricardo Rodriguez of AC Milan looks on during the UEFA Europa League Third Qualifying Round Second Leg match between AC Milan and CSU Craiova at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on August 3, 2017 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)

According to a recent report by Blick, Everton are hoping to seal a move to bring AC Milan left-back Ricardo Rodriguez to Merseyside during the winter transfer period. The same source has mentioned that the Toffees will face stiff competition from the likes of Atletico Madrid, Schalke 04, Borussia Dortmund and AS Roma in pursuit of the Swiss international when the transfer window reopens in January.

Even though the Merseyside outfit are well-stocked in the left-back department with Lucas Digne and Leighton Baines currently at Marco Silva’s disposal, the former has been linked with a move to Olympique Lyonnais while the latter’s contract runs out at the end of this campaign. Hence, Rodriguez could prove to be a decent long-term replacement for Baines due to his wealth of experience in European football.

Rodriguez Is Enjoying A Decent Spell At The San Siro

Since sealing a move to the San Siro from VfL Wolfsburg in the summer of 2017, Rodriguez has gone on to feature in a total of 92 matches for AC Milan, netting four goals while grabbing five assists across all competitions.

On the defensive end, the Swiss full-back has made an average of 1.5 tackles, 1.2 interceptions and 2.4 clearances per game in the Italian Serie A (stats via whoscored). The 27-year-old has also earned 67 international caps for the Swiss national side and has scored eight goals for them in the process.

What Will The Swiss Defensive Ace Bring To Merseyside?

Rodriguez is a moderately paced full-back and can complete some dangerous dribbles down the left flank. The FC Zurich youth product is a reliable defender at the back as he can make some vital interceptions for his side. His positional awareness is exceptional while he is also a potent threat from set-pieces as he can score the odd goal from dead-ball situations.

The Swiss international is arguably a better defender than Digne inside his own half. However, the current Everton left-back is comparatively more creative in the offensive end of the pitch. Therefore, Silva could choose to bring Rodriguez to Goodison Park in January so that he can increase competition for the left-back spot in his starting XI.

The Toffees have made a poor start to this campaign and currently find themselves in the relegation zone due to their inability to score enough goals up top. They have also been leaky at the back which has heaped more pressure on Silva’s shoulders. If the former Watford manager can avoid getting the sack until January, then he might be able to turn his fortunes for the better by signing quality players like Rodriguez this winter.

A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.