James Rodriguez of Real Madrid celebrates after scoring his team's 4th goal during the Liga match between Real Madrid CF and Granada CF at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on October 05, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

According to a recent report by Marca, Everton are sitting in the driver’s seat in the race to secure the services of James Rodriguez from Real Madrid this summer. However, the same source has claimed that the Toffees can expect to face competition from Arsenal and Wolverhampton Wanderers in pursuit of the Colombian international in the off-season.

Rodriguez’s Frustrating Season At The Spanish Capital

The 28-year-old has endured a difficult campaign at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium so far as he has struggled to earn regular first-team starts under Zinedine Zidane’s stewardship. Random injuries have also hampered his progress at the Spanish capital with Rodriguez receiving only 650 minutes of playing time this season. To his credit, he has scored one goal and provided two assists for Los Blancos during that time in all competitions which indicates that he might still have something to offer at the highest level.

The Colombian midfield ace has averaged 1.3 shots, 2.0 key passes and 0.1 dribbles per game in the seven league matches he has been a part of this season (stats via whoscored). Even though he has lost a yard of pace from his game over the past few years, he can still be a creative presence in midfield for his team.

Rodriguez has a wealth of experience representing Colombia after scoring 22 goals in 76 matches for his nation thus far. He will once again be expected to play a vital role for Carlos Queiroz’s side in the next edition of the Copa America which has been rescheduled to kick off in the summer of 2021 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

James Rodriguez of Real Madrid CF looks on during the Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and Real Madrid CF at Wanda Metropolitano on September 28, 2019, in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

What Will The Colombian Playmaker Bring To Merseyside?

Despite lacking mobility nowadays, Rodriguez can still be a dangerous dribbler due to his outstanding close control and composure when in possession of the ball. He excels at getting past players in midfield and can open himself up to play a decisive pass in the final third. The South American sensation also packs a lot of power and precision with his shot attempts which makes him a potent threat from long range. However, he desperately needs to get a regular run of games under his belt if he wants to reignite his career at the highest level.

An experienced campaigner like Rodriguez will not only add a lot of creativity and goals to the Toffees midfield but will also increase competition for places within Carlo Ancelotti’s squad. He will be a significant upgrade over Tom Davies, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Fabian Delph, Andre Gomes and Morgan Schneiderlin after they all flattered to deceive with their performances this season.

Furthermore, the Colombian could propel the Merseyside outfit into breaking into the Premier League’s top 6 next season if they can successfully manage to lure him to Goodison Park in the off-season. He will also allow Ancelotti to be more experimental with his formations, team selection and tactics in the coming years as the Colombian will add another dimension to the gaffer’s attack at Merseyside.

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.