Everton have become the latest team to join the race to sign Real Madrid‘s Marco Asensio. According to Fichajes, new manager Rafa Benitez has set his sights on the Spanish playmaker as he looks to strengthen his squad ahead of the new season.
Asensio was touted as one of the brightest prospects in Europe after arriving at Real Madrid from Mallorca. However, he has failed to live up to the hype and has dropped down the pecking order at the Spanish giants in recent seasons.
His underwhelming performances last season resulted in him being overlooked for Euro 2020. He was named in Spain’s Olympic squad but he has failed to impress in Tokyo.
Asensio reportedly does not fit into new manager Carlo Ancelotti’s long-term plans at Madrid and is expected to be shipped out this summer. According to the report, the Spaniard is on the radar of three Premier League clubs — Everton, Leeds United and Leicester City.
Asensio has made 193 appearances for Madrid in all competitions, scoring 37 goals and providing 22 assists. He has two years left on his current contract and is available for a bargain price of £30million.
Marco Asensio to Everton – The right option for Benitez?
Everton are looking to trim their wage bill by offloading some of their high earners and James Rodriguez leads the queue in this regard.
Asensio would make for a decent replacement for the Colombian. Despite his recent struggles, Asensio is a world-class player and a move to the Premier League could be just what he needs to rediscover his best form.
The Spaniard is a versatile midfielder capable of playing on either flank or as a No. 10. He has extraordinary technical ability and can wriggle out of tight spaces using his agility and quick feet.
He also has great vision and a fantastic passing range. Asensio averaged 0.9 key passes, 0.8 dribbles and 1.1 shots per game in La Liga last season. Those numbers will only go up with regular game time.
Everton lacked out-and-out wingers last season and thus failed to provide consistent service to Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Asensio’s arrival could certainly help in that regard. The Spaniard likes to dribble past defenders and whip in dangerous crosses for his strikers to attack. Calvert-Lewin, in theory, should thrive in Asensio’s presence.
Asensio also offers a goal threat of sorts. He is by no means a prolific scorer but he does have the ability to test the goalkeeper with strikes from distance.
The Spaniard will add creativity and flair to Everton’s attack and at just £30 million, he will be a shrewd long-term signing.
Stats via Whoscored