Everton were extremely busy and ambitious in the transfer window last summer and even shelled out a club record transfer fee to lure Gylfi Sigurdsson to the Goodison Park. This was seen as a signal of intent and promise from the club as they prepared to qualify for the Europa League at the very least. However, as the season panned out, the Toffees found the going tough and they soon had to settle for mid-table comforts after a fleeting brush with the prospect of a relegation fight early on.
This leads the club to question their stance on transfers and the need to buy specific players who could help them clear out the glitches in the squad. A lot of times this season, Everton have been overrun in midfield and have looked shorn of quality. Hence, unsurprisingly, the Toffees are being linked to Thomas Delaney of Werder Bremen. Everton are looking to beef up their options in the midfield and signing Delaney might be one of their first moves when the market opens in a few days.
Thomas Delaney: Player Profile
Delaney is a versatile midfielder who is capable of plying his trade in attacking positions as well as in deeper areas. However, he is best suited to the midfield controller role in which he can spray passes from the centre of the park and can control the tempo of the game with his composed presence on the ball. Delaney is good at recovering and then recycling possession and can start attacking moves with his wide passing range. The Dane controls the tempo of the game, as he holds back attacking moves at times by passing it sideways; or, he quickly unleashes a pass setting his team on the counter.
He can occasionally drop deep and makes use of his sense of positioning coupled with tenacity to thwart off the opposition’s creative play. Delaney has played 29 matches in the Bundesliga this season and has scored twice whilst having created a decent 31 goal-scoring opportunities. Four of those chances resulted in assists, and most of them were created from an advanced central midfield position. Delaney can regularly shift to the flanks to change the flow of play but focuses on building the play from the midfield itself. His tenacity helps him to regularly press the opposition, and he has won 49% of his defensive duels this season too.
Should Everton make a move?
Everton genuinely need some reinforcements at the centre of the park next season. Lack of options has forced manager Sam Allardyce to play Wayne Rooney in a deep midfield position. This goes on to highlight the dire need of quality players that Everton need on their roster currently. Thomas might not be an instant impact-maker but Everton need to be smarter this time around and avoid mistakes of the previous season.
Stats Courtesy: Whoscored