Carlo Ancelotti should urge Everton to make a move to sign Andrea Belotti in the summer transfer window, amid claims the striker is considering his future with Serie A side Torino.
According to Corriere Dello Sport, Belotti is refusing to sign a new contract at the Olympic Grande Torino Stadium despite the efforts of President Urbano Cairo.
The 27-year-old is set to enter the final year of his current £68,000-per-week deal in June, but is beginning to show an interest in a move away after six seasons with Il Toro.
Everton were credited with an interest in Belotti earlier this month by Corriere Granata, who claimed the forward also had suitors in Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United plus at least five sides in Italy and a handful from Germany and Spain.
Corriere Dello Sport anticipate AS Roma and AC Milan to make efforts to sign Belotti in the off-season should he leave Torino, where he is the captain of Davide Nicola’s side and has 11 goals and six assists in 26 Serie A appearances this term.
It is noted that Belotti would consider a move to the Stadio Olimpico as he is fascinated by the city of Rome and the work of CEO Tiago Pinto in rejuvenating Paulo Fonseca’s squad, despite the Giallorossi not being expected to have Champions League football next season.
The 32-cap Italy striker is also understood to have a number of friends in the Roma dressing room from the national side, but Pinto will not pursue a deal should Milan present an offer worth €25m (£21.5m) as predicted.
Pinto will only pursue Belotti under certain conditions, while doubt also remains in the future of Fonseca and potential successors Maurizio Sarri, Julian Nagelsmann or Sergio Conceicao may not be as fond of a move for Belotti as the Portuguese.
Any hesitancy from Roma in pursuing a deal for Belotti should be seen as a huge boost for Everton and Ancelotti, as the Goodison Park natives are likely to be in the market for a new centre-forward this summer and the Italian represents an ideal candidate to target.
The Toffees are not expected to retain Joshua King beyond the short-term contract he signed upon his arrival in the winter transfer market, while claims have arisen that offers will be considered for Cenk Tosun and Moise Kean.
Ancelotti would not be expected to regret letting King – plus Tosun or Kean – leave in the summer if the Italian has Belotti at his disposal, especially if he is available for around a quarter of his €100m release clause (£86.5m) for foreign sides.
Torino boss Nicola lauds Belotti for being a “unique” forward and appreciates the UC AlbinoLeffe product for his “technical qualities but also for his spirit”, which have seen him score 103 goals and provide 25 assists in 219 career Il Toro appearances in all competitions.
Veteran Torino midfielder Tomas Rincon also praises Belotti for his drive and work in harrying opponents, as the 5 ft 11 forward “has given us so much joy with his goals”.
Ancelotti should implore Everton to sign the £36m-rated Belotti in the summer when he waves goodbye to King, and hire a true challenger who can push Dominic Calvert-Lewin to perform at his best and help sustain the Toffees’ European qualifying challenge.