To my surprise, I made it to double figures in comments with my recent Sean-Celotti article with a few posters asking when the list of possible targets might follow.  Since my wife is on holiday with the kids and I have nothing better to do (other than my job), I thought I'd oblige.

  • Because Sam Hoare also does an excellent article along these lines – I’ve restricted myself in a few ways:
  • Maximum circa £15m price tag only (with a bit of flex on a couple of Championship strikers where Simms might realistically be a makeweight).  Money is likely to be very tight.
  • Players I think Thelwell & Dyche might genuinely be interested in, rather than my own personal preferences. This doesn’t make for glamorous reading. 
  • Mostly, Moyes-Zone 22 to 26 year olds who are ready to start games now.  Not the often more exciting high potential youth prospects who could take a few years.
  • I’ve ignored players who might be available on loan, which could be the more interesting list in many respects – as that is possibly our better opportunity to get hold of some real talent without spending much.

Hopefully I have left you with the sexier end of the market, Sam!


Possibly with Simms as a makeweight, the most obvious candidates are:

  • Gyokeres of Coventry: built himself back up after failing to make the grade at Brighton. With Coventry missing out to Luton I think this looks like a very likely signing.  A sensible signing, because he leads the line well but he’s probably not going to be more than a c. 10 goal a season striker in the Premier League. 
  • Piroe of Swansea: similar to Gyokeres but possibly better in the build up. Dutchman who scores a lot for Swansea and has earned a step up. Also has just one year on his contract so wouldn’t be hugely expensive.

Other possibilities who might be within that £15m budget include:

  • Diallo of Strasbourg: been a good striker in the French league for many years (he’s now 27). Looks good enough to play in the Premier League but without ever becoming exceptional. Good physical attributes. Would score goals (just got 20 in a poor Strasbourg side) and has decent all round play. He cost Strasbourg about £8m nearly 3 years ago but I think they’d sell for about £15m.
  • Akpom of Borough: He’s free! After being touted as a quality youngster at Arsenal, it’s taken him to age 27 to finally show some end product under Michael Carrick’s tutelage. Quite possibly the purple patch of an otherwise average player – but the style and variety of goals suggests otherwise. I think he’d be a decent signing on a free but there’s better around if we have money.
  • Dembele of Lyon: Another freebie.  Decent, but he’s been around a few clubs now and I’m not convinced he’s that good. He’ll sign for whoever offers him the most wages – which is why I’m not sure he’s the right fit for us. He only got 3 goals in 23 last season, too.
  • El-Bilal Toure of Almeria: Quite strongly linked for c. £25m which seems expensive for a reasonable but unspectacular goal return in Spain (6 in 20).  Surely the fee would be less (he cost Almeria £8m). In terms of play, seems to thrive on balls played into space he can run into – and crosses.  Which means he probably is suited to Dyche-Ball in some ways. Like many African strikers coming through, hard to tell where he is on the Niasse to Osimhen spectrum.
  • Boadu of Monaco: A young prodigy for Alkmaar but gone backwards in France (just 3 in 12). A decent footballer with good physical attributes who Dyche might be able to revive.  Monaca might let him go for the circa £15m they paid for him. I think he’d do well with us.
  • Miovski & Duk of Aberdeen: Very productive double act of Macedonian and Cape Verde / Portuguese. Hard to tell if they are good enough to kick on at Premier League level, but quite an interesting pair. Duk has been linked already at £10m.  He’s the faster, more dynamic of the two.
  • Brereton-Diaz of Blackburn: in retrospect the player we probably should have got instead of Maupay. We probably tried very hard and failed.  He’ll be in high demand on a free transfer, I expect and may well go abroad (and who could blame him).

Centre Back

I’ve avoided left-footers to avoid duplicating what Branthwaite gives us – and I’ve gone for big 6 foot 3 plus types.  No short-arse defenders please. I want us to be terrifying at set pieces.

  • Montes of Espanyol: tall player with decent ball skills, albeit possibly not as mobile as Mina. Still only 26, he only joined Espanyol from Monterrey in Mexico in January (for about £8m) but might be a good one to pick off the now relegated side for maybe £12m or so in summer. Genuinely commanding in the air too.
  • Cisse of Olympiakos: a giant Senegalese CB who we’ve been linked with quite a few times (he's now 27).  A bit gangly but still mobile and an absolute beast physically.  Not bad on the ball either but maybe Greek football flatters him.  Hard to say.
  • Agbadou of Reims: tall Ivorian, who at 25 is probably ready to step up after a strong season in France under the management of 30 year old English / Belgian Will Still.  Possibly the most Mina-like of this group in terms of one-touch passing under pressure.  
  • Porozco of Troyes: tall Ecuadorian with good pedigree at international level, and linked with Man City.  Only 22 and lacking experience but a good aggressive defender, decent on the ball (as you’d expect given interest from City). Just relegated with Troyes so might be available at good value.
  • Rodon of Spurs: surplus to requirements and played for Rennes in France last season. A reliable defender. Nothing like as good as Mina really, but would still probably do a good job.  Maybe more a Coady replacement but better in a back 4.
  • Williams of Liverpool: promising defender who now needs first team football at age 22, and he’s not going to get it with the RS.  Could develop under Dyche into a really good player.
  • Holding of Arsenal: quite injury prone.  Is he better than Keane? Hard to say… Is he as good as Mina? No. But he is a north-west lad and an aggressive defender with a bit of bite about him and good experience at Arsenal where he’s surely now surplus to requirements.
  • Robinson of Atalanta: This one is just for you Mike Gaynes, since I have ignored the MLS otherwise.  26 years old, decent number of caps for USA and probably earned a step up now. He’s also out of contract in December so it's a good time to buy.  Is he good enough for the Premier League?  Not sure.

Of these, I think Montes and Agbadou would good signings for now – and Porozco and Williams would end up being good signings after a bit of development. 

Article continues below video content


A few interesting ones – all for free apart from Levi Garcia – include:

  • Traore of Wolves: I think he’d be a popular signing but honestly, I’m not convinced unless his wage demands were modest (which they probably won’t be).  Flatters to deceive but still quite effective.
  • Lucas Moura of Spurs: scored a beauty against crap Leeds on the final day and has some magic moments now and again. A better footballer than Traore, might be worth a punt for free.
  • Nelson of Arsenal: a really high potential player whose career has stalled. Now 23, just the sort of player Dyche could rehabilitate as our right-sided version of McNeil. Might be competition from abroad after a very productive loan at Hoffenheim early in his career. Could form a long term partnership with Patterson. I think he’d be a really good signing.
  • Kent of Rangers: ex-RS youth academy winger with plenty of skill and goals, though not much pace. He’d be a good signing too, I expect. Earned a shot at the Premier League after performances for Rangers in Europe. He’s been linked. Plays predominantly wide left though, cutting in on high right foot.  So might not be ideal.
  • Garcia of AEK Athens: left footed wing / forward who plays largely on the right but can fill in as a striker.  Good goal return in Greece and good in the air too. Trinidadian so speaks English to the extent that helps. Probably cost about £10m to £15m.

Personally, I think Nelson and Kent are such strong options that we probably shouldn’t look to spend any money in these positions if we can help it.  Much better to get a freebie if at all possible.  Garcia might be an excellent signing if we have money to bolster the attack in addition to a wide midfielder type.


For the time being, we have a functioning midfield trio in Garner, Gueye and Doucoure – although the latter two will leave for free in June 2024.  Since Gbamin, Gomes, Alli and Davies are all unlikely to be with us this coming season we need some cheap reinforcements (especially if we sell Onana as seems likely). 

  • Flemming of Millwall: A big unit, aerial threat but with some Dutch quality on the ball. Really an attacking midfielder (unlike the others listed) but you could see him doing really well with quality crosses into the box from the likes of McNeil, Patterson and Garner. Probably cost about £15m.
  • Winks of Spurs: The English Xavi rehabilitated himself a bit in Italy, although couldn’t stop Sampdoria getting relegated as bottom club in Serie A. He is a decent footballer, and could do well under Dyche if paired with someone more physical and dynamic.  Would probably be cheap because he’s been overtaken by Skipp and they’ve got Sarr, Bissouma, Bentacur and Hjojberg already…
  • Skhiri of Cologne: Out of contract in June, the Tunisian Busquets is linked with the likes of Roma, Leverkusen and Seville, which indicates his pedigree.  He’s been a really classy and gritty defensive midfielder since making his name at Montpellier and deserves a big move now. Would be a good replacement for Onana, should Onana leave
  • Spierings of Toulouse: Also out of contract in June, he forms part of a Dutch double-act in the Toulouse midfield, shoring things up defensively while Van Den Boomen (also free) acts as a very cultured playmaker. Solid but probably not as good as Skhiri.
  • Ampadu of Chelsea: I’ve liked this guy for years. Versatile, gets stuck in, got a bit of drive, aggression and ability too. Just can’t break through past hundreds of players in the Chelsea squad. Could see him forming a decent partnership with Garner.  Covers the CB position too (where he might end up long term). Might cost up to about £15m
  • Doyle of Man City: A really good footballer who you could imagine hitting it off with Garner over time; two driven, talented kids from the north west. Never going to make it at City. They would probably let him go now after a series of loans.  Doubt he’d cost more than about £10m to £15m. 
  • Garcia of Liverpool: Just as we have a Chilean namesake, there’s a Liverpool playing in Uruguay (known locally as the Mierdo Roja).  At 20 Garcia is their midfield general and captain.  Very highly rated from youth international performances and might be available for around £7m. There’s probably another half dozen like him in Argentina and Brazil – I can’t see us going for anyone like him this time around, I just wanted to do the Mierdo Roja gag.

Full back

I honestly don’t think we should be spending more than peanuts on full-back cover – which means there are countless options out of there. I won’t go into all the cheap (or free) full backs from across Europe and South America etc but here’s a couple of more obvious ones:

  • Manning of Swansea: Out of contract in June, Irish left back with 15 goal contributions in the Championship. That’s some going. The sort of player Dyche has plucked from the lower leagues and turned into Premier League material – and would be a good bit of genuine competition for Mykolenko.
  • Williams of Man Utd: you could also imagine Dyche doing a good job with Williams, who would cover both full-back positions. Never going to make it at Man Utd but could become good for us.


Realistically, we’re not going to get more than one or two free transfers, so we can’t trick ourselves into thinking we can improve about 5 positions for free.  We will need to spend some money.  But even with an unremarkable looking foursome of, say, Manning and Nelson for free along with Gyokeres and Montes then we should be a stronger next season (even if Onana leaves).  We’ll probably secure a couple of loans too.  This should be enough for us to hover around 10th to 12th possibly.  Disgustingly unambitious as that may sound, it is a big step in the right direction.  From there you can really build.

Share article:

Reader Comments (80)

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer ()

Dupont Koo
1 Posted 02/06/2023 at 06:11:14
Thank you for compiling the list, Robert.

As long as Thelwell can sign young, pacey, tough & hungry players to make the squad more dynamic, I'm confident with Dyche's ability to mold them into low- to mid-table squad that doesn't have to worry too much about relegation.

And that, as you said, "From there you can build".

Mike Gaynes
2 Posted 02/06/2023 at 06:39:19
Great list, Robert, as always.

Thanks for the Yank callout. Miles Robinson was definitely Premier League ready a year ago -- fast, aggressive, fierce tackler, would have started for the USA in the World Cup -- but he blew out an Achilles.

He has come back and played every minute for Atlanta this year (I haven't seen him). If fully healthy, worth considering. Does not, however, fit your preferred profile of an aerial dominator.

To your wide right list, I would add Timothy Weah of the USA, gettable from Lille for about £10M. Only 23. Ridiculous speed, bags of talent, World Cup experience, but for some reason much more productive for his national team than at club level. Could be a diamond in the rough.

Christine Foster
3 Posted 02/06/2023 at 06:59:37
Robert, that's not a bad list to start with, you should forward it to the club!

My only observation is we desperately need a creative No 10. Since the Icelandic went on a permanent holiday and James Rodriguez (who is on a free and worth a punt, lol) got handed the bums rush by Benitez, we haven't had anything creative in the middle of the park and without a No10 we are a one-trick-pony outfit. (The fact he got shafted by Benitez means he is worth a starting place alone!)

But seriously, it's a real issue.

John Zapa
4 Posted 02/06/2023 at 07:17:03
Good list, Robert. I doubt the club will sign non-British-based or experienced players. I also doubt the funds will be there for £15M+ signings.

If a new investor doesn't come on board this month, then Pickford will be sold to continue the stadium construction. Onana will be sold to provide a small amount that can be used for signing-on fees for free transfers and a couple low cost signings. Once again, I expect the club to start the season with both a weaker starting 11 and squad.

Mal van Schaick
5 Posted 02/06/2023 at 07:45:09
Robert, I think your list gives us a good appraisal of where the club stands in terms of potential signings, and it also flags up the difficulties that lie ahead.

I did a quick scan of stats from some leagues in Europe and the UK, and in truth, we either won't be able to afford players that might improve us, or they are too old or too young.

Personally, I do not want to see or hear about players that we have supposedly chased in the past. Zaha for one. If we look at what Kompany has done with Burnley, he has combined a blend of younger players with established experienced players, who played attractive football. Albeit in the Championship.

If Dyche remains as our manager, I would like to see him try and get a mixture of experienced and younger players into the squad. We have some experienced players in the first team who we can build around, if we can shrewdly add younger players around them, it may be possible to improve our league position next year. Strikers are a priority.

Sam Hoare
6 Posted 02/06/2023 at 08:08:07
Great list, Robert, as always, and a few names that hadn't appeared on my radar.

It will be very interesting to see what money there is to spend and on what positions. I think the pot could be a bit bigger than some expect if we secure new investment over the next week or so to go along with £65M in fees for Gordon and Kean.

Tony Everan
7 Posted 02/06/2023 at 08:20:01
Robert, thanks, always food for thought , you’re getting creative restricting the list to low cost options.

I think Reiss Nelson on the fringes at Arsenal is a player we should be having a very close look at. I like players who have a the right amount aggression and a bit of attitude. His 3 goals and 2 assists in 11 games this season is sound, he was underused maybe because he is leaving .

There will be more than a few clubs circling , AC Milan abroad too , but we should definitely look at him , even more so as there is now no transfer fee to pay. I’ll be watching and waiting to see if we have an interest.

He is at the right age to really kick on at his next club. I like the idea of McNeill on the left, Nelson on the right bringing balance to the team. Sean Dyche could definitely work on him and improve, .

Ampadu also interests me, still young and ready to move on to establish himself. I think we need another central midfielder for squad strength. Davies will be gone, Gana one more year left, could be the right time to have a good up and comer as back up with succession planning in mind too. What do you make of City’s Shea Charles we have been linked with ?

Of the forwards I think Dyche will be wanting someone with essential aerial ability, score goals and has a decent bit technique to hold the ball up with strength and cleverness. DCL in a different body, a body that works !

If you look at the strikers he had a Burnley - Barnes, Weghorst etc, Galoots ( makes me laugh every time thanks Dave Abrahams, you’re getting me into trouble, I’m calling everyone a Big Galoot these days.). I’m expecting a refined, physically tough 6’2” plus who transcends the Galoot level as a back up challenger to DCL.

I like the new scientific term ‘ Niasse-Osimhen Spectrum’ . We have to get this signing right above all else, I mean Beto comes into the right profile, but would he cope with the Premier League?, I’m not sure.

The fictional striker I want is a young Olivier Giroud, if Kevin Thelwell can find one. Maybe he can pull a rabbit out of the hat and get someone for under 15m., maybe not.

If we have got money to spend this is where it needs spending, we need the best we can get that fits into Sean’s system. This window has got to be focussed on getting goals into the team, as it absolutely killed us last year being the lowest scorers in all four divisions before the Brighton game.

Robert, I’d like you to get out of the financial straitjacket with regards the striker and give us some more quality options that would in theory, cost more, but give us a much better chance of scoring more goals.

Robert Tressell
8 Posted 02/06/2023 at 08:53:01
I agree we lack creativity in midfield, Christine. This summer, I think a playmaking Number 10 will too much of a luxury – and what little money we have will be spent elsewhere. Midfield will certainly need sorting out next summer when Doucouré and Gueye both leave.

It sounds grim but, if you consider where we might have ended up against Fulham, Newcastle and even Man City etc with just a proper centre-forward on the pitch for 90 minutes, then you can see just how much we came on under Dyche.

If we do get some money this summer, through investment or sales or both, I hope we still hunt around for players in the bargain aisles – because there's some real talent here and the players (like Garner, McNeil, Tarkowski and Patterson) can be a really good fit. Then, as you say Tony, we might move in to a higher price bracket for the all-important striker.

Tony Abrahams
9 Posted 02/06/2023 at 09:06:51
Because I think the headline of this thread could have been titled “WHO’S FREE OR CHEAP IN 2021” then although I never thought I’d ever feel sorry for Rafa Benitez, sometimes I just feel I have to defend people because I have a totally different view, Christine!

If anyone got shafted then it was definitely the most divisive manager in out history, imo Christine, although just like everyone else, Rafa Benitez, has done very, very, very fucking well out of dysfunctional Everton.

It looks like lot of good thought and research has gone into your work once again Robert, and reading through this list, which includes quite a few players I’ve never heard of, definitely makes interesting reading, mate.

It’s absolutely staggering the data clubs can now receive on any player they might be interested in. This data tells you things like average kilometers covered during a game, how many sprints a player completes, their top speed, and the most kilometers they have covered during a game.

I’m not one who is big on a lot certain stats, some of which I think can be quite meaningless, but this doesn’t mean they are not important, especially when it comes to the things I wrote about in the paragraph above.

Brian Harrison
10 Posted 02/06/2023 at 09:33:54

You say about us lacking a creativity in midfield, but I believe in Garner we have a very creative player. He had to play the last 2 games of the season at right wing back because of injuries and did it brilliantly. But he has already shown in the couple of games he has played in central midfield he has all the skills to be that creative player we have been lacking for a long time. Paul Scholes said he couldnt believe Man Utd let Garner go and he said he was the most talented midfield player they had unearthed in a while.
I think that if you ask most Blues our best midfield 3 would be Garner, Gueye and Doucoure.

I believe that Garner will be better than James Madisson and it wouldnt surprise me to see him get into the England squad next year.

John Williams
11 Posted 02/06/2023 at 09:51:12
I cannot agree with the signing of Gyokeres, just another, well in my opinion, a cart horse.
Having watched the play off, Luton v Coventry, neither of those sides would cope with the PL, without a big investment of incoming players.
THe 3 teams going down are way above Luton.
Stu Darlington
12 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:06:53
Interesting list Robert but of course will all depend on how much money we have available to spend.
My main priority would be strikers and midfield,and for our likely budget I can’t see much further than the obvious candidates you list.
I also thought Sarr of Watford might have been worth a punt although as a winger with pace who can score goals.
In midfield I like Flemming of Millwall but have doubts about his pace,and Moura on a free would definitely add something different.
At centre back young Williams at Liverpool has potential and would be a good buy for us, but would they let him cross the Park and would he want to?
Full backs are also a priority and the ones that you mention have also caught my eye in the UK,although I am not that familiar with foreign leagues
McTominay has allegedly expressed a desire to leave United.
I know they’ll want more than we could afford for him,but I would buy him and make him captain,just the leader we need on the park and a tough competitor in midfield.Cloud cuckoo land I know but we need someone to take control in the middle and I’m sure he could do it
Whatever the financial situation decisions must be made and positive action taken quickly,not the shilly shallowing,dithering we have seen in recent seasons which have often seen us losing out to the competition
Be intriguing to read Sam’s contribution.
Colin Glassar
13 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:11:03
Until Riquelme and Moutinho sign on the dotted line and are shown wearing Everton shirts I refuse to indulge in any further transfer speculation and gossip.

Esk, Romano, Bobble, News Now, Maguire etc…. Can all do one. Show me the money!!

Mo Guindi
14 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:20:15
I suspect that we may have a transfer ban or possibly worse imposed on the club following on from the various investigations so perhaps we should take a look at what’s going on in our academy? Isn’t that supposed to be one of the top talent generators in the league? Why the hell can’t we make that work?
Joe McMahon
15 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:21:08
Colin, whilst I agree you did forget Lee Trundle, I seem to recall Moyes building him up to be the next Robin Van Persie.
James Marshall
16 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:41:02
Brereton Diaz is going to Villareal so he's out of the equation.

I liked the look of Gyökeres in the play-off final. Seems to hold the ball OK, decent shot on him and he looks a handful. Works hard too so could be on the Dyche radar.

We need a striker. Badly. And I think this is going to be the hardest part of the puzzle to solve given that we're only able to pay in shirt buttons.

Steve Brown
17 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:57:14
Well-researched list Robert.

Can we have El-Bilal Toure, Agbadou, Skhiri and Nelson? Thanks.

We also need a right back, left back, CAM and wide left player as well while not increasing our net spending. Hope Thelwell and Dyche are feeling creative and inspired.

Martin Mason
18 Posted 02/06/2023 at 10:57:30
Absolute tragedy and it's not only us looking for bargain basement buys like this but all other promoted and struggling sides too. We are broke in terms of buying power and could even suffer penalties in that direction. Surely the best solution must in some way involve players that we already have on the books that will cost nothing and involve no purchase risks.

Sorry Mo@14, didn't see your post on same subject and same conclusion.

Michael McIvor
19 Posted 02/06/2023 at 13:59:33
Trai Hume of Sunderland (right back, centre back). Tough, agile, good aerial Only 21 years of age, great professional attitude and character who would get better and better under Dyche, no doubt.
John Pickles
20 Posted 02/06/2023 at 16:31:29
Pace, for God's sake, pace. Whoever we get in, no matter what their position, can we not end up with someone who can't handle the speed of the premiership again.
Mike Gaynes
21 Posted 02/06/2023 at 16:47:54
Amen, John #20, it's got to be first on the list of characteristics for anyone we sign. We've been the slowest club in the Prem for years now.

Brian #10, amen, I'm a huge Garner fan too and believe he's the ideal distributing midfielder to build around. My only quibble with your post is that Onana will be in the picture more than Gana, who turns 34 in September and had some horrendous lapses on the ball this season.

Robert #8, I hope we shop ALL the bargain aisles, not just the European ones. There are some speedy young attackers in Latin America who would be worth a look IMO.

Jamie Crowley
22 Posted 02/06/2023 at 17:24:27
This chat of a CAM seems a bit wild-eyed optimistic to me.

Dyche loves Doucoure, and has him at the 10. I see no real immediate need to sign a 10, because Doucoure is Dyche's guy.

If Doucoure goes down, I'd be tempted to play Iwobe there. Yes, Iwobe isn't everyone's cup of tea, but the dude passes the ball better than any current Everton player. He's wasted out wide, and I can see him feeding a striker continually playing the 10.

And that last bit is by far the most important. I don't care if we sign Superman at CB, if we don't get a striker we are doomed. Striker is the only position I honestly care about this summer that absolutely needs to be addressed.

Great article / submission Robert.

Jamie Crowley
23 Posted 02/06/2023 at 17:25:22
Mike @ 21 -

Gana and Onana (if we hold on to him) will platoon next season. It'll be a gradual takeover of the position by Onana from Gueye I'll bet.

Christine Foster
24 Posted 02/06/2023 at 17:55:33
I think it's a critical transfer window because, as I said on another thread, there is a distinct possibility that once the independent panel has sat, we could be facing a transfer ban, especially so if it relates to any player irregularities, such as Deli Alli. So the sooner we get players in the better. What is clear is what we have is not good enough and with players needing to be replaced after leaving, we will possibly see a total of 7 or 8 players gone. The academy might fill one or two but they would struggle especially in key positions. Iwobi might decide to go,Keane, Davies and Holgate, would probably follow. If we have to sell Pickford or Onana to fund transfers, thats a total of 7 or 8 first team squad gone and no replacements. Never mind the question mark over Seamus, big heart but another season is too much to expect, perhaps as cover but not a regular. It reminds me of Tony Hibbert who was a great servant to this club but was taken to the cleaners in his last season against younger, faster wingers. That's nit right and the way Dyche sets his team up, the fullback are tight and narrow leaving us prone to diagnose balls wide into space where fullback needs fast legs to chase. The last 5 or 6 games was clear evidence of that.
So, replacements are needed, freebies and loans with a couple of modest buys in case our options are curtailed at some point in the near future. Any transfer ban would likely be a couple of seasons so we have to get it right and get a few in to be on the safe side.
John Chambers
25 Posted 02/06/2023 at 19:04:10
I agree we will generally be shopping at Woolworths pic n mix rather than Harrods deli this summer but we should have a bit of wriggle room after the end of June.
If I have interpreted the FFP rules correct and, from memory, previous analysis by Paul “the Esk” our FFP figures for 20/21 were a loss of circa £70m and £36m for 21/22 meaning this year end 30th June we have to make a small profit to meet our 3 year obligation of not losing more than £105m. Our transfers this year are just about equal, sale of Gordon and Moise Kean offsetting purchase of Onana, Garner and Maupay, although as the purchases will be amortised over their contracts the financial impact this year will be a net positive of about £45m. Hopefully that means we can meet our obligations without a forced sale of Pickford or Onana before 30th June this year.
I appreciate cash flow is always important but if my interpretation is correct If that it means for our next financial year (23/24) the £70m will be out of the calculation giving us a little more scope from 1st July for purchases. Also we may start to get benefit from the new stadium as, presumably, some deals such as naming rights, could be landed to generate income in the next financial year.
Always optimistic!
Dale Self
26 Posted 02/06/2023 at 19:33:37
In other transfer news I heard Moshiri could leave on a free. Ok, ok, I’d take Montes and Nelson for sure Ampadu if we wait too long on another choice. And let me take another opportunity to piss on Winks.

Good work as always Robert. I wanted to not think about but you’ve made it too tempting for sone weekend womdering.

And Toure looked good for Almeria but I only saw him in two games.

Dale Self
27 Posted 02/06/2023 at 19:51:07
Didn’t look it up in time to edit last post but move Ampadu up to yes. That kid has some football IQ if he is the one who played at Brighton under Potter. Very useful if the price is good.
Barry Rathbone
28 Posted 02/06/2023 at 19:59:30
It does make you wonder why we pay transfer fees at all when, presumably, this is the tip of a massive iceberg of talent.
Steve Shave
29 Posted 02/06/2023 at 20:26:06
Thanks Rob, nice one. I like Piroe and think he would be better value than Gyökeres, if SD is our manager next season he will need a big unit and Piroe fits that bill. I'd be happy with either.

I appreciate we are going to have to sell at least Onana to release some funds but I pray we can sign a striker and a winger asap. Then we won't spend the whole window pulling our hair out. Clarke of Sunderland might be an astute purchase as well?

Jason Hewly
30 Posted 02/06/2023 at 21:55:30
Great read, Robert. Thanks for taking the time to entertain and inform us. I love articles like this.

I'll be surprised if we sign any of these players as I think our financial situation counts against us. We're going to have to wait for the Premier League money at the end of August, and any free agent won't wait until then to sort out their future, unless they're shite and have no offers.

We need a manager with either a good profile and a rolodex of former charges who can convince players to come or a South American-experienced manager because it seems like the only value (punt-wise) in transfers is in South America.

The facts are, we can't pay the wages, we can't pay the transfer fees, we haven't got a manager who attracts players, our board are MIA, the media is denigrating us, the government is investigating us, the football authorities are about to charge us, and we're about to sell any decent player in the squad.

In short, we're fucked and Dyche won't convince a freebie unless they're desperate for a club. Andy Carrol, you're number is being called. Depressing.

Mike Gaynes
31 Posted 02/06/2023 at 22:13:11
John #25, Woolworths sounds pretty good to me.

I'm more expecting us to shop at St. Vincent de Paul community stores for "preloved goods at reasonable prices."

We'll be looking for lightly used Andros and Demarai brands, and hoping whatever we buy won't be too worn and Rondon.

Mal van Schaick
32 Posted 02/06/2023 at 22:18:33
Forest release Lingard?

He only played 60 minutes for them, but from I believe he did okay for West Ham. May be worth a punt.

Ian Horan
33 Posted 02/06/2023 at 22:32:24
Maybe a simplistic view but don't be surprised at Woods from Newcastle, loaned to Forest then got injured. Worked with Dyche and better understudy to Calvert-Lewin.

Also on the points deduction issue etc, we have never been found guilty of financial issues. First intervention has always been a suspended points deduction and a fine. Only on the second or third breach was the points deduction enforced.

Ernie Baywood
34 Posted 02/06/2023 at 22:46:26
We need to be able to put out a team that has players playing in their preferred positions. Right now that means we need:

- Goalkeeper - no action unless Pickford goes
- Centre-back - signings will only be for improvement, so probably a luxury we can't afford.
- Right-back - Can Coleman still cover that position? If so, signings would be a luxury.
- Left-back - Urgently need cover for Mykolenko. Ideally need a replacement so that Mykolenko provides cover.
- Wide midfield - we've got two and one is Iwobi. We have to sign at least one. Probably two.
- Centre-midfield - overstocked and a few can probably go.
- Centre-forward - no point keeping Maupay. Sell for what we can get. This is where the majority of funds needs to go. Signing a striker is probably the best way to get Calvert-Lewin fit too.

So we need a left-back, two wide-midfielders and a striker. Bare minimum.

Mike Allison
35 Posted 02/06/2023 at 23:03:23
Available for free:

Reiss Nelson, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Ben Brereton-Diaz, Wilf Zaha, Moussa Dembele, Youri Tielemans, Daichi Kamada, Houssem Aouar, Andrea Bellotti

Some other interesting ones too. Are we even trying to sign any of them?

TransferMarkt – Contract Ending in 2023

Christine Foster
36 Posted 02/06/2023 at 23:03:59
Tony @9,

I think Benitez did exceptionally well for himself, I wonder how much Liverpool paid him under the table for his appointment with us? At least the same amount – double if it resulted in relegation; he almost got it..

On the vexed subject of James, according to a number of sites (5) his average salary at Everton was a base of between £90k- 140k a week and win bonus. Not the £240k a week many tout, indeed at his last current club, it's stated that his salary was £51k a week... in Saudi it was £200k a week.

James Rodríguez – Salary & Contract

Is he currently worth £50k a week with no sign-on fee?

Tony Abrahams
37 Posted 03/06/2023 at 08:16:15
Come on, Christine, if you appoint the most divisive manager in the history of Everton FC, tell him to reduce the wage bill so you can then give him some money to sign his own players, and then give him £1.7 million to spend, then I think you are definitely asking for trouble.
Ian Bennett
38 Posted 03/06/2023 at 12:35:42
A couple of players coming back from injury, but there are some potential good-value loan deals to supplement us next season – as I doubt the parent club will want their wages in the Championship.

Top clubs will pick up Maddison, Barnes, Ward-Prowse and possibly Harrison, so forget those sadly.

One good buy this summer and four good loan deals (two domestic and two overseas), can turn around the options.

Leicester's James Justin - can play left-back and right-back. On verge of England squad but two injury-plagued seasons will turn off the top clubs. Loan with obligation to buy if he's fit and training.

Or Ricardo Pereira, again can cover positions. At 29 and £4M a season, they will want him out. Technically he's decent.

Rodrigo at Leeds – he's 32 and will want to stay in the league. A decent goal threat, for me a no-brainer loan signing. Can come off the bench if he's slowing down.

Dan James – still at Leeds, and I am not sure he's done enough to stay at Fulham. I'd take him on loan to add pace to the right. Promise, but running out of options if he can't translate pace and talent into goals and assists.

Livromento at Southampton – he had real promise before injury. For me, he's a better player than Walker-Peters. Him and Patterson fighting for positions takes the pressure off Seamus who could cover further forward or right of a 3.

Sarr at Watford – he's not going to want to stay in the Championship. Clubs will be in for him, but a loan with an obligation to buy if he makes appearances appeals.

Gyökeres – I wouldn't buy him and neither will top teams. A loan with an obligation to buy on appearances is the right deal for Everton. And gives him something to prove in the top league.

Robert Tressell
39 Posted 03/06/2023 at 14:21:32
Barry @28, I know you are being sarcastic but there is some truth in what you say.

Part of the point of the article is to show that the sorts of players we were recently spending £20M+ on, are not really any better than the sorts of players available to us at much lower cost (in many cases, materially worse). So the players I've listed really are the tip of a large iceberg of very "gettable" players who could genuinely improve us.

Finding a Mitoma, a Mac Allister or Caicedo at low cost is hard – these are genuine Champions League quality players. But finding steady Premier League quality players is not.

This is highlighted by the fact that our best players (aside from Pickford) all cost very low sums indeed. Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Patterson, Coleman, Garner, McNeil, Calvert-Lewin.

Two seasons playing in this sort of market (plus some loans) could see the squad in very good shape – and ready to focus on finding real difference makers.

Alan J Thompson
40 Posted 03/06/2023 at 17:04:04
Moore from Bournemouth looked quite good but is, I think, 30 years old but for a low fee might prove a good back up for Calvert-Lewin for a season or two.

I'd prefer younger but he could fill a gap while Simms and Cannon show if they have what's needed.

Jamie Sweet
41 Posted 04/06/2023 at 11:35:38
Having just watched the Australian A-League final, I'm convinced that Sammy Silvera of the Central Coast Mariners is the next Mbappe.
Dan Nulty
42 Posted 04/06/2023 at 19:08:08
Probably the right list of where we will be shopping. We need to swerve Traore, he is another Gray, one good game every 7 or 8 and not someone who will drive us up the table. I'm surprised Nelson is on a free, I'd imagine he will be on a few clubs lists and wouldn't surprise me if he goes back to Germany.

It is so depressing being an Everton fan, no one really inspiring me anyway on that list.

On a brighter note, stadium coming along nicely, it will look incredible all lit up when done!

Ajay Gopal
43 Posted 04/06/2023 at 19:34:08
Thanks Robert, for setting the ball rolling for the summer transfers. Let me put out my thoughts:

Exits on Free: Gbamin, Mina, Davies, Begovic, Townsend, Virginia
Return from Loans: Coady, Vinagre
Unsure Futures: Dele Alli (hopefully will exit on a free)

Players we have encashed on / or can encash on:

Nkounkou: 2 million
Isaac Price: Development fee 1 million (?)
Moise Kean: 25 million
Maupay: 5 million ?
Andre Gomes: 5 million?
Michael Keane: 10-12 million?
Onana: 20 million net profit ?

So, let's say that Dyche has a war-chest of about 60-70 million entirely funded by player exits in the summer (not counting the Gordon money, which I assume has gone towards reducing the liability of the P&S Rules.

So, we would need to recruit for the following positions:

Goalkeeper - should be a competent understudy to Pickford. I don't have names, but I assume for about 10 million, we can get a fairly decent, solid option from the continent.
Full Back - Walker-Peters from Southampton would be a very good option because he can play on both wings, but I expect he would be priced at about 15 million at least
Central Midfield - I like Ampadu from the list that Robert has put out. Mainly because he could cover multiple positions including CB if necessary. 15 million
Right Wing: Ryan Kent seems to be a decent option from Rangers. About 7 million
Forward/Winger: How about Anthony Elango from Man United on a loan with an option to buy? He has lost his way a bit, but Dyche might be able to revive his career.
CF: This is where we need to splurge the cash - 25 million for Tammy Abraham/Gyokeres/Beto
CF: Another CF on loan ? Maybe Broja from Chelsea? I know he has been injured since December 22, but he is back in training (from the Chelsea website). Even if he is available from Sep/Oct onwards, maybe worth a punt? Or even someone like Wout Weghorst from Burnley on a free or nominal fee?

So, about 75 million to be invested for incoming players, which seems doable.

If our squad looked something like this, I would be quietly confident that we will reach mid-table:

GK: Pickford, (Back-Up), Tyrer
FBs: Coleman, Mykolenko, Patterson, Walker-Peters
CBs: Branthwaite, Tarkowski, Holgate, Godfrey, Reece Welch
MF: Gueye, Doucoure, Ampadu, Iwobi, Garner
RW/LW: McNeil, Gray, Kent, Elanga
CFs: Calvert-Lewin, Tammy Abraham, Cannon, Broja

Send Simms, Dobbin, Mills, Warrington out on loan.

Starting XI for the 1st game:

McNeil Doucoure Garner
Ampadu Gueye
Walker-Peters Branthwaite Tarkowski Patterson

With Iwobi, Abraham, Elanga, Broja/Cannon, Gray as back-ups

Dan Nulty
44 Posted 05/06/2023 at 07:33:13
Sorry, Ajay, I completely disagree with you. Tammy Abraham wouldn't touch us with a barge pole.

Broja back from a long injury, I'd be watching how he is before signing him, I wouldn't trust our medical staff to assess him properly given the injuries we have suffered over the last 5 years.

We need to stop signing Man Utd rejects.

I can't see us wasting our little transfer budget on a full-back when scoring goals is more of an issue.

Ian Bennett
45 Posted 05/06/2023 at 07:54:11
Weghorst isn't a free, he's still under contract and burnley will want money for him if someone us stupid enough to pay it.

2 goals in his last 37 games in English football, they'd look at him like a god at Finch Farm. Kieffer Moore – no thanks either.

Bring back Niasse, he's a better record than these lot.

Dan Nulty
46 Posted 05/06/2023 at 08:10:37
I'd see if we could get Mason Burstow from Chelsea, lad looks like he could be a good striker. Decent size, can score a goal and play a bit too.
Alex Parr
47 Posted 06/06/2023 at 00:07:31
Robert, thank you, great stuff, quite a few names there I have not heard of.

Tony #7 - I'd prefer (within a realistic spectrum), a young Dzeko over Giroud. I was gutted we didn't sign Giroud after the links in 2017, but I think Dzeko is one of the most under-rated strikers of recent years. Giroud aswell, but Dzeko moreso.

Mike Gaynes
48 Posted 06/06/2023 at 00:57:22
Ajay, Tammy Abraham blew out his knee on Sunday and won't play football again for a long time.
Eric Myles
49 Posted 05/06/2023 at 03:11:52
Mateo Retegui age 23, a traditional No 9 by all accounts and only valued at €16 million.
Ajay Gopal
50 Posted 06/06/2023 at 04:34:56
I saw that, Mike. Feel sorry for the lad, hope he recovers soon.
Sam Hoare
51 Posted 06/06/2023 at 06:23:15
Reiss Nelson is apparently signing a new contract at Arsenal so that’s one of the more appealing free options off the table.
Dan Nulty
52 Posted 06/06/2023 at 07:05:09
No surprise there Sam, he was a good impact sub for them.
Steve Shave
53 Posted 06/06/2023 at 07:08:21
Nelson staying at Arsenal would be a disappointment, I think he would have been a really good fit for us and a likely starter. Next.
Robert Tressell
54 Posted 06/06/2023 at 07:19:26

I suspect Retegui has played his way into a Champions League side, even if we could afford him, I'm guessing he's now out of reach following a strong start to his Italian national career.

Real shame about Nelson, Sam. He would have been absolutely ideal.

Nathan Jones
56 Posted 06/06/2023 at 17:54:56
At full-back, I'd recommend Cody Drameh, this might sound surprising as he is with Leeds and could not get into their first team last season, however, lots of managers just don't trust youth.

He went to Cardiff on loan for the second half of the season in January 2022; in May, he won young player, players' player and fans' player of the season. He was 20 at the time. He was outstanding at everything you'd want a full-back to do.

Alex Parr
57 Posted 06/06/2023 at 22:36:07
Nathan, is Drameh or left-back right-back? Not heard of him.

We defo need a back-up left-back who offers a more dynamic option than Mykolenko (who I would still keep as first choice).

Looks like Dyche agreed Nathan Patto is the real deal now, can see him starting over Seamus uch more next season, so I'm less concerned about right-back cover for next year.

David Hallwood
58 Posted 06/06/2023 at 22:53:33
Really interesting read, Robert, but it brings me back to my major moan, if you can do this, what the fuck was our recruitment team doing from August to the end of the January window knowing we were in desperate need of a striker?

They couldn't find a single striker in the whole of world football to backup Calvert-Lewin, and as you've illustrated not £60 million here £45 million there, but loanees, 'worth a punt' from lower leagues or young and hungry up and comings.

That dereliction of duty nearly sent us down, and everyone of them should've been sacked on the spot.

Tom Bowers
59 Posted 06/06/2023 at 22:55:13
How about Teilemans of Leicester who they don't want now.
A very useful player.

If they saw Gana was worth bring back last season and then pay out for the likes of Maupay then this guy should be considered.

Alex Parr
60 Posted 06/06/2023 at 23:15:39

Link to a fancy picture I did of the current squad and what I would do...

David Nicholls
61 Posted 07/06/2023 at 05:03:16
Tom @59.

Tielemans will be highly in demand. Good player but I don't think we'd have a sniff unfortunately…

Danny Baily
62 Posted 07/06/2023 at 07:28:08
David 61, bookies don't even have us in the running unfortunately.
Sam Hoare
63 Posted 07/06/2023 at 07:52:13
Dembele being linked this morning. Not my favourite but with 80 goals in around 220 appearances he's a fairly competent goalscorer. Having said that Maupay had 70 goals in 260 appearances before us and look how that's gone!

I think centre-forward is where we will spend the bulk of any transfer funds we have so I'm hoping for a bit better. But if we sell Maupay then maybe someone like Dembele would be a good squad option.

Phil (Kelsall) Roberts
64 Posted 07/06/2023 at 08:12:48
If what I read is right, then I do worry.

Reported that Coady was on £16k a week at Wolves and £66k at GP which was one of the reasons we did not sign him.

Thelwell was at Wolves and must have known how much he was on, so why did he throw him another £2M in wages???

Either report (Transfermarkt) is wrong or Thelwell is being stupid.

John Keating
65 Posted 07/06/2023 at 08:24:31
Some threads mention Morellos of Rangers which is fair enough, but prepare to see him play only half the games. Not because of injury but suspensions

I would have liked us to go for Kyogo of Celtic but I suspect he'll follow his old boss to Spurs.

Tony Abrahams
66 Posted 07/06/2023 at 08:41:43
I always thought that Dembelle had a real chance of going straight to the top, so to see him running down his contract, makes me wonder if that ship has sailed and it's just all about how much money he can earn for himself?

I'm sure he left Fulham to join Celtic, in his younger days, and this will have really helped him financially because clubs pay a lot less money, if they can entice a player from a different country into their club. I give Dembelle, the benefit of the doubt on this though because who wouldn't want to play for Glasgow Celtic, rather than Fulham at such a young age?

He was brilliant for Celtic, but playing in the Scottish league, he could probably play and score without really pushing himself in a lot of games, although he always seemed to score in the big games, a hat-trick against one of the greatest club teams Barcelona have ever produced, being the best example I can give.

I haven't followed him since he went back to France, but he was one player I'd have loved Everton to sign in previous years, and could imagine him playing alongside Calvert-Lewin, and being too much for a lot of defenders to handle.

Talent alone is not enough – so has Dembelle still got the fire in his belly to excel?

Ernie Baywood
67 Posted 07/06/2023 at 08:57:52
I very much doubt we'll be getting an out-and-out goalscorer.

Someone who can provide a focal point, contribute in build up, apply pressure and chip in with something close to double figures is probably closer to the mark. And closer to what we need and can afford.

I'm sure we can do a lot better and we'd all like to do better... but someone like Che Adams would fit the profile and, at 26, would make a lot of sense.

Tony Everan
68 Posted 07/06/2023 at 10:51:55
No question about Moussa Dembele having goalscoring talent, in the previous French season it was 21 goals in 30 something games, this season it has been dire the season before his good season was dire.

I put it down to possibly the player struggling with persistent injuries, especially reoccurring thigh injuries stretching back to 2017 up until late last year. It's a risk I'd say, we need someone more reliable and resilient.

Ernie's suggestion of Che Adams way well come to pass for strength in depth, coupled with a younger up-and-coming forward like Gyökeres or someone (Sam, Robert will tell you who) who Thelwell thinks could develop fast into a 15-goal-a-season striker for us.

The most important thing next season is to approach it with the starting point that Calvert-Lewin is a bonus, not a permanent fixture. We have to design our attack now without him in the equation, and if he gets back to full power then we will be massively stronger in attack.

Nathan Jones
69 Posted 07/06/2023 at 15:53:17
Alex 57, Cody Drameh is a right-back, but I think we need both two new full-backs to either compete or replace. I love Coleman... but.

All Cardiff fans were sure he was going to start for Leeds in the 2022-23 season, lots of cardiff fans thought that they were in the know and put him in their fantasy football teams. However this didn't happen.

He went on loan to Luton in January, they got promoted in May. I'm not saying that it was only him, there may have been other factors I'm not a Luton aficionado but the team improved on his arrival.

To give it some context, Drameh arrived at Cardiff at the same time as Man City's bright young midfielder Tommy Doyle, who was very good, but not a patch. Though in fairness, Doyle has just got promotion playing in midfield for Sheffield Utd. Also worth a sniff.

Phil Smith
70 Posted 08/06/2023 at 17:54:33
I'd get Florian Wirtz in a heartbeat, but he is a bit of an injury worry. Maybe Takefusa Kubo as well. Love to have his energy in the side.
Frank Crewe
71 Posted 08/06/2023 at 18:03:39
The enduring myth of the young hungry player. Most of the worlds best players are in their prime years. It's all about attitude. Age has nothing to do with it. Some of our best players last season were the older ones. Tarks, Coady, Doucoure, Gana, Mina, Pickford. McNeill was supposed to be young and hungry but under Lampard he was a total dud. It was only after Dyche arrived that he started to look like the player we thought we had bought. Doucoure is in his prime but couldn't get a look in under Lampard but once again Dyche has made him play to his proper potential. If we only look at a players age instead of his overall attitude we could end up with a team of Deli Allie's. We don't want players who think they are God's gift and looking for their next move while they take our money. We want players who want to play.
Tony Abrahams
72 Posted 09/06/2023 at 07:29:27
So it doesn’t matter if they are young, just as long as they are hungry Frank!
Paul Kossoff
73 Posted 09/06/2023 at 15:57:28
Anyone fancy a pop at Ross Barkley who has just been released from Nice along with Nicolas Pepe. Surely Ross is better than anything we have in his position and he's only 28.
Will Mabon
74 Posted 09/06/2023 at 16:00:24

that, as is said with the internet, would "break" ToffeeWeb.

Brian Williams
75 Posted 09/06/2023 at 16:03:09
Just the suggestion should break ToffeeWeb to be frank!!
Will Mabon
76 Posted 09/06/2023 at 16:05:54
Brian, some bridges are simply incinerated.
Dave Abrahams
77 Posted 09/06/2023 at 16:14:37
Frank (71) Your post would possibly rule out Onana, some fans on here think he is going to be a really special player, I go along with the last three Ines of your post while not disagreeing with rest of it.
Robert Tressell
78 Posted 10/06/2023 at 09:27:18
Frank @ 71: the hungry young players thing is more about a buying strategy than how you put together a team. A team needs experienced players and some youth, as you have said. However, our finances mean we cannot generally afford to buy experienced players of real quality anymore. Unfortunately this has come about because we burned through a lot of money buying very expensive mediocre experienced players who then rapidly deteriorated in value, leaving us with no money to reinvest when they left for free or nominal sums in the space of 2, 3 or 4 years. I've no problem with us buying older players these days, provided they are low cost and reasonable wage like Tarkowski.
Phillip Warrington
79 Posted 11/06/2023 at 03:09:27
Watching the Copa America, man there are some good players running around there young and old. Surely we could pick one or two from that competition. The skill and technique of players brilliant, and the last couple of years has become quite physical as well.

It will be interesting what if any signings we get this season. To me, half the problem with the club is recruitment. We are the second longest-serving club in the top flight. Surely that would have given us a little edge in recruitment, with players knowing we might not win the league but at least we will still be playing in the top flight.

But no… we seem to go for the seasoned professional who is thinking about a retirement plan, rather than the hungry young player looking for success.

Geoff Lambert
80 Posted 11/06/2023 at 15:02:08
Phillip #79 why on earth would the hungry young player looking for success come to Everton?
Kieran Kinsella
81 Posted 12/06/2023 at 00:48:57

Interesting development according to Alan Nixon the English FA are trying to convince Canon to switch allegiance from Ireland to England. I mention this as you’ve mentioned lack of representation at under 21 international level as a negative for our young players. Does this show the FA are desperate or is Cannon better than we thought?

Add Your Comments

In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.

» Log in now

Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.

How to get rid of these ads and support TW

, placement: 'Below Article Thumbnails', target_type: 'mix' });