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Everton Hoping To Recruit This La Liga Full-Back In January: Right Choice For The Toffees?

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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.

In a recent report, Todo Fichajes has revealed that Everton are hoping to recruit Barcelona full-back Emerson Royal, who is currently playing on loan at Real Betis, in January. It is believed that the Toffees could beat AC Milan if they move in for the Brazilian defender this winter but would have to pay €30m (€20m to Barca and €9m to Betis for the cancellation of the loan) to acquire his services this winter.

Emerson’s Recent Emergence In The Spanish Top Tier

The Sao Paulo-born full-back has been involved in six matches for the Andalusian outfit this term in La Liga. The 21-year-old has proven his worth on the right side of Manuel Pellegrini’s defence after averaging 3.2 tackles, 1.5 interceptions, 1.8 clearances, 0.5 shots, 1.7 key passes and 0.8 dribbles per 90 minutes in league football this season. He has even been tidy when interchanging possession with his teammates down the right flank as he has made 81.4% of his attempted passes in the Spanish first division (stats via whoscored).

Emerson also had a fruitful loan spell at the Estadio Benito Villamarín last season when he registered three goals and six assists in 34 matches across multiple competitions. Based on his recent form, Everton’s interest in signing the Brazilian right-back seems justified as he would serve as a decent long-term successor to Seamus Coleman, who is entering the twilight years of his playing career.

Everton hoping to recruit Emerson Royal in January (Emerson is seen defending in the picture)
Frenkie de Jong of FC Barcelona duels for the ball with Emerson Royal of Real Betis Balompie during the Liga match between Real Betis Balompie and FC Barcelona at Estadio Benito Villamarin on February 09, 2020, in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

What Are The Brazilian Defensive Ace’s Best Attributes?

Emerson can use his quickness to make some driving runs with the ball on the right-wing. He is also a decent crosser of the ball and can be a potent goal-threat from long range as he packs a lot of power with his shot attempts.

The Brazilian sensation has transformed himself into a top defender due to his tenacity to win the ball back inside his half. Plus, he can put his foot through the ball to clear his lines when his teammates are under pressure from the opposition.

Is Emerson The Right Choice For The Merseyside Outfit?

If Emerson can maintain his high standards after the international break, then the Toffees should consider paying €30m to bring him to Goodison Park in January. He will be a significant upgrade over Seamus Coleman, Jonjoe Kenny and Ben Godfrey at the Merseyside club.

The Betis star can expect to get regular starts if he can settle into life in English football quickly, but the jury is still out on whether he can adapt to the physical nature of football in England. Either way, Emerson could be tempted by the opportunity to play with his fellow countrymen Richarlison, Bernard and Allan, so Ancelotti should consider launching a bid for him when the transfer window reopens at the start of next year.

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