Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Everton Locked In A Three-Way Transfer Battle For This Defender: What Will He Add To Ancelotti’s Side?

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Abhinab Ghosh
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.

According to a recent report by Calciomercato, Everton are locked in a three-way transfer battle for Sassuolo centre-back Gian Marco Ferrari this summer. The same source has also revealed that the Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti is a huge admirer of the Italian defender and has set his sights on recruiting him in this off-season.

Ferrari’s Injury Struggles In Italian Football This Season

The Parma-born talent has endured a frustrating season at the MAPEI Stadium as he has missed out on several games due to a thigh and later, an ankle injury. Frequent injury problems have hampered his progress in the Serie A during this campaign which explains why he has only received 1245 minutes of game time on the field.

Ferrari has featured in 14 matches for Roberto De Zerbi’s side this term and has picked up three yellow cards in the process. He has averaged 0.4 tackles, 1.5 interceptions and 1.9 clearances per game in the Serie A this season. However, the Italian deserves credit for being tidy with his ball-distribution after completing 91.8% of his attempted passes in league football so far (stats via whoscored).

Even though the 28-year-old has struggled to be consistent with his performances on the field mainly due to random injuries, yet he has transformed himself into a vital squad player for Sassuolo over the past nine months. Ferrari’s defensive contributions had helped the Italian outfit steer clear of the relegation zone before the football world came to an abrupt halt as a result of the recent COVID-19 pandemic.

Everton locked in a three-way transfer battle for Ferrari who is seen battling for the ball in the photo
Torino’s Italian forward Andrea Belotti (L) and Sassuolo’s Italian defender Gian Marco Ferrari go for the ball during the Italian Serie A football match Torino vs Sassuolo on August 25, 2019, at the Olympic stadium in Turin. (MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP via Getty Images)

What Will The Sassuolo Defensive Ace Add To Carlo Ancelotti’s Team?

Unlike his name, Ferrari lacks speed, but he makes up for it by using his incredible upper-body strength to overpower the opposition in the air. He is a commanding presence inside his own penalty area as he can exercise his power to win his fair share of aerial duels and pull off some crucial last-ditch clearances at the back. Plus, the Italian is usually quick to read the danger and can position himself accordingly to win possession back for his side. He has been a useful utility player for Sassuolo this season. However, the jury is still out over whether he will be able to stay injury-free in the coming seasons following a tough campaign in the Italian top-flight this term.

A defender of Ferrari’s experience and skill set will be a decent addition to the Toffees squad as he will provide adequate cover for the likes of Michael Keane, Yerry Mina and Mason Holgate at Goodison Park. He will not only add some physicality and defensive solidity to Ancelotti’s backline but also enhance the overall depth of his squad.

However, based on his recent form, Ferrari is not good enough to feature in the Premier League week in week out. At 28, the Italian is on the decline and won’t be a long-term solution to Everton’s defensive problems at Merseyside. Ancelotti should only consider orchestrating a move to acquire his services if he is willing to use him as a squad player. Otherwise, the Merseyside outfit will be better of looking at other targets as Ferrari has shown no signs to justify a summer move to the north-west of England.

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