Pat Nevin identifies the signing Everton need and where Marco Silva must get them from | Football | Sport
Everton drew 0-0 with Crystal Palace in their Premier League opener last weekend after spending over £100m in the summer transfer window.
While waving goodbye to highly-rated central midfielder Idrissa Gueye and promising winger Ademola Lookman, among othetr departures, Marco Silva brought in seven new signings.
The Portuguese acquired attackers Moise Kean and Alex Iwobi, central midfielders Andre Gomes and Jean-Philippe Gbamin, full-backs Fabian Delph and Djirbril Sidibe and back-up goalkeeper Jonas Lossl.
The top six positions do not seem set in stone, as usual, this season with Chelsea and Manchester United expected to have transitional campaigns, despite the latter’s 4-0 thumping of the former on Sunday.
Everton are among the chasing pack looking to break into the European spots, but Nevin feels they are one player away from making a real assault.
“Everton are a centre-back away from being excellent,” the former Toffees winger told the Racing Post. “Everton, with some consistency, can bridge the gaps.
“There were times last season when they played opponents off the park, other times they were horrible.”
As for where to spot a centre-half that can take Silva’s side to the next level, Nevin has a place in mind.
“If I was Marco Silva I’d be scouring the Italian top division for a centre-back who can come in and offer that authority they need at the back,” he said.
Everton full-back Seamus Coleman disagrees, however, and believes he is playing alongside two very capable central defenders in Michael Keane and Yerry Mina.
“Michael was different class all last season and throughout pre-season and has really grown into an Everton player,” Coleman told evertonfc.com.
“His first season was difficult for everyone and he had to battle through that, which he did excellently.
“You can see his confidence and how he is playing with his chest out. The way he has handled himself is all credit to him and his mentality. We are very lucky to have him.
“Yerry came in on Saturday and was one of our best players. He is very solid and slowly but surely understanding what the manager wants from him.
“We have two class centre-halves and competition everywhere else on the pitch – and we hope that adds up to a good season for us.”