Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Talented Midfielder Gives Green Light To Join Everton: What Will He Add To Ancelotti’s Team?

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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 TodoFichajes, Sporting CP midfield ace Wendel has already given the green light to join Everton this summer. The same source has also mentioned that the Brazilian playmaker fancies a move to the Premier League with the Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti hoping to sign him as he is desperately trying to strengthen his midfield options during the summer transfer window.

Wendel’s Growing Influence At The José Alvalade Stadium

The South American prospect is a product of the Fluminense academy and had made a high profile move to Sporting CP in the summer of 2018. He has enjoyed an impressive season in the Liga NOS so far after producing a series of commanding displays at the heart of the Portuguese club’s midfield. The 22-year-old has netted two goals and provided two assists in 30 matches for his current employers this term on all fronts, which showcases his growing impact in the final third.

Wendel has established himself as a competent performer at both ends of the pitch after averaging 1.3 tackles, 0.5 interceptions, 0.9 shots, 1.2 key passes and 1.5 dribbles in every 90 minutes of league football and the UEFA Europa League this season (stats via whoscored). He has become a favourite among the Sporting fans mainly because of his excellent contributions at the centre of the park over the past nine months.

The Liga NOS youngster has also represented Brazil at the Under-23 level, having registered one goal in five matches for them thus far. If he can show some signs of improvement in the coming seasons, then he should have a decent shot of earning a senior cap for Brazil boss Tite’s senior team someday.

Wendel, who is seen in the photo, gives green light to join Everton this summer
Sporting’s Brazilian midfielder Marcus Wendel celebrates after scoring a goal during the Portuguese League football match between Sporting Lisbon and Braga at the Jose Alvalade Stadium in Lisbon on August 18, 2019. (PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images)

What Will The Brazilian U-23 International Add To Ancelotti’s Side?

Wendel is a complete midfielder who can use his pace and agility to complete some lung-bursting dribbles with the ball in the opposition half. He has shown enough composure when interchanging passes with others around him. The Brazilian is also a tidy ball-distributor after completing 92.6% of his attempted passes in the Portuguese top-flight this season (stats via whoscored). He can strike the ball with a lot of power from long range, but his overall productivity needs to improve if he wants to break into the world-class bracket in the future.

Adding an up-and-coming midfielder like Wendel will undoubtedly be a shrewd move for the Merseyside club before the start of the new campaign. He will not only bring some mobility and creativity to Goodison Park but will also increase the overall depth of Carlo Ancelotti’s squad. The Sporting CP star will offer some much-needed competition for the likes of Fabian Delph, Andre Gomes, Tom Davies, Gylfi Sigurðsson and Jean-Philippe Gbamin at Merseyside in the years to come.

Gbamin’s poor run with injuries and Sigurðsson’s lack of consistency has enhanced Ancelotti’s need to recruit some fresh faces to his midfield department this summer. Wendel ticks all the right boxes in terms of what the Italian tactician demands from his midfielders. Even though the Brazilian whizkid is not a consistent goal-scorer or assist-maker from midfield, yet he has the potential to become a world-class performer in his position someday.

Ancelotti might be the ideal man to get the best out of Wendel as he has had a lot of experience of nurturing young players during his long and successful managerial career. However, there are some doubts over whether the Liga NOS midfielder has what it takes to cope with the physicality and high intensity of English football. Hence, if the reports are accurate about Wendel’s desire to seal a move to the Premier League, then the Toffees should consider orchestrating a move to lure him to the north-west of England ahead of the new season.

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