Having gone through October and November without a win in the Premier League and with only one win from four games in December, it’s safe to say that Everton have not been in the best shape in recent months.
Luckily for the Toffees, the January transfer window is close to opening and could therefore give the Merseyside club the opportunity to potentially strengthen their squad and put them in a good place to put their poor run of form behind them end the season on a high note.
Speaking to Football Insider on what business Everton could do in January, pundit Frank McAvennie had this to say on the matter.
He said: “If Everton are going to stick with Rafa then it needs to be shown. The easiest way to do that is in January, you can give Rafa the players he wants. It’s no good sacking [Marcel] Brands and backing the manager if the form doesn’t turn around and you sack the manager anyway.
“It sounds like Rafa will have the chance to build his own team and that’s what he needs. You can’t judge him, it’s not his team. Let him bring four or five quality players in this January then let’s see where they are. I can see that happening.”
The prospect of Everton signing four or five quality players must be an exciting one for a lot of Toffees fans who will undoubtedly be hoping that Benitez can get 2022 off to a winning start in the same way he started the season off with Everton.
However, as McAvennie mentioned, with Everton saying goodbye to their director of football Marcel Brands earlier this month, it will be interesting to see how the club goes about their business in January and if Brands’ absence will have an impact.
In terms of which areas of the pitch the Toffees could look to strengthen in January, if they are aiming to sign a handful of quality players, they should definitely focus on signing at least one, if not more defensive players given how only Leeds United, Watford, Newcastle United and Norwich City have conceded more goals than they have so far this season.
Furthermore, they may have to replace the likes of Yerry Mina and Lucas Digne who have both been linked with an exit away. Consider Seamus Coleman’s age, too, and the idea of signing a few defenders certainly makes sense.
After all, the Merseyside outfit won’t start picking up more consistent point hauls until their defence gets better.