An update has emerged on Everton target Ilaix Moriba, regarding Barcelona’s valuation of the midfielder.
90Min reported earlier this week that the Toffees are one of a number of Premier League clubs who have the chance to sign Moriba from Barcelona. Tottenham, Manchester United, Wolves and Leicester were among the others.
Marcel Brands must pounce on this opportunity to sign Moriba. Barcelona want £12.8m for the gem and the Everton chief should cough up the cash to add him to Rafa Benitez’s squad as he could prove to be a big upgrade on existing midfielder Tom Davies.
In the 2020/21 campaign, the Toffees academy product averaged a SofaScore rating of 6.75 in the Premier League for Carlo Ancelotti. This was an improvement on the previous three campaigns, when he scored 6.64, 6.63 and 6.52 respectively, but still far from impressive.
Moriba, meanwhile, averaged a SofaScore rating of 6.94 in La Liga for Barcelona as he made 14 appearances, despite only turning 18 in January. He won an eye-catching 61% of his duels on the pitch, compared to Davies’ 52% last season.
Whilst it is impossible to gauge the difference in quality between the two leagues, it does show that the teenager was able to perform to a high standard under pressure whilst playing for a massive club like Barcelona. Whereas, Davies has been unable to make his mark on Goodison Park after several years in the first-team.
Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman hailed the midfielder as being very strong last term, saying: “Ilaix scored a fantastic goal, it was an incredible goal and had a lot of impact on the match. He took advantage of the opportunities he had. He is very good at controlling the ball and he is a very strong player.”
This shows how highly the Dutch manager rate him, as does the fact that he integrated him into the first-team despite his young age. Therefore, Moriba could prove to be a big upgrade on Davies if he is able to translate his form over to England, whilst also being five years younger than the Everton man with potential to improve further and develop as a player.
At the age of 18, there will be no rush for him to be an instant success. He could take up Davies’ role in the rotation and learn from the likes of Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure whilst also getting minutes under his belt when needed to aid his growth. This means that he could prove to be a big upgrade on Davies in the long run, as he has time on his side to fulfill his potential.
And, with reports claiming that Andre Gomes could be set for an exit from Goodison Park this summer, Moriba could arrive as his direct replacement and ensure the Toffees don’t miss the Portuguese ace whatsoever.