Thursday, October 6, 2022

Everton To Rival AS Roma In Pursuit Of This Ligue 1 Full-Back: What Will He Bring To Merseyside?

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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, Le10Sport has stated that Everton are set to rival AS Roma in pursuit of LOSC Lille full-back Zeki Celik, who is open to switching clubs this month. It is believed that the French club are willing to entertain offers above €15m for the Turkish defender with the Toffees interested in securing his services during this January transfer period (via Le10Sport).

Celik’s Impressisve Form At The Stade Pierre Mauroy

The 23-year-old has made a solid start to this campaign after putting in a run of impressive displays on the right side of Christophe Galtier’s defence. Celik has featured in 15 matches for the French outfit this term, netting two goals and providing two assists in multiple competitions.

The Turkish right-back has caught the eye by averaging 3.2 tackles, 1.8 interceptions, 1.5 clearances, 0.8 key passes and 0.6 dribbles per 90 minutes in the Ligue 1. However, he needs to be more careful when distributing the ball from the right flank as he has completed 76.8% of his attempted passes in the French first division (stats via whoscored).

Celik has taken great strides towards improving himself this season but could be attracted by the proposition of playing under a world-class manager like Carlo Ancelotti at Goodison Park if such an opportunity arises this winter.

Everton to rival AS Roma in pursuit of Zeki Celik who is in action in the photo
Lille’s defender Zeki Celik vies for the ball with Celtic’s midfielder Mohamed Elyounoussi during the UEFA Europa League Group H football match between Lille and Celtic on October 29, 2020, at the Grand Stade Pierre-Mauroy in Lille. (Photo by DENIS CHARLET / AFP)

What Will The Turkish Full-Back Bring To Merseyside?

Celik boasts decent pace under his belt that allows him to make a few energetic runs with the ball on the right-wing. He is one of the hardest-working players in Christophe Galtier’s squad and has proved his worth as a reliable defender at the back for Lille this season.

The Turkish international has got good defensive awareness and can make some crucial interceptions for his team. Plus, he is also not afraid to put his foot through the ball when clearing his lines and can even contribute by scoring and creating his fair share of goals from the right-back position.

An up-and-coming defender like Celik will undeniably be a massive coup for the Toffees if they can find a way to get a deal done for him before the transfer window slams shut at the start of February. Both Seamus Coleman and Jonjoe Kenny has been far from convincing with their performances this season. Hence, Ancelotti would be wise to get Celik on board this winter as he will undoubtedly be a significant upgrade over his current options at right-back.

The 18-time Turkish international is a player on the rise and will only get better in the coming seasons. He will enhance the Everton first team’s overall quality and could potentially help the Merseyside club compete for some major trophies over the next few years.

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