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Everton reignite interest in Conor Gallagher

Everton were heavily linked with a move for Conor Gallagher in the summer and now a new update has emerged on the club’s pursuit of the player in the winter transfer window.

What’s the latest?

According to the Daily Mail, Everton are joined by a number of Premier League clubs to have registered their interest in the Chelsea midfielder this month.

As per the report, four other top-flight sides are chasing the England international with Crystal Palace, Newcastle United, Nottingham Forest and Southampton joining Everton.

That said, it is claimed that Gallagher would prefer to remain at Stamford Bridge to fight for his place in Graham Potter’s first team.

Imagine him & Onana

Despite Gallagher’s reluctance to leave Stamford Bridge this month, it would be a major coup for Frank Lampard in his pursuit to retain Everton’s Premier League status at the end of the season.

The Toffees have found themselves falling into another challenging relegation scrap ahead of the second half of the season with the side currently 19th in the top-flight table after collecting just 15 points and scoring just 15 goals over their first 19 outings.

As a result, the opportunity to strengthen the team and add quality could not have come soon enough for the former Chelsea boss and Gallagher would be a seismic move in the manager’s efforts to improve performances on the pitch.

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First up on the quiz: after what match was Rafa Benitez sacked?

The 22-year-old midfielder – who boasted a £50m price tag last summer – saw a rapid rise to fame in English football over the last 18 months after his influential loan spell at Crystal Palace earned him an opportunity to impress Gareth Southgate in the senior England team ahead of the World Cup which led to the manager selecting Gallagher in his squad at the prestigious international tournament back in November.

However, since returning to his parent club in London last summer it seems the success has stagnated with the player being given inconsistent game time this season, averaging just 39 minutes per league game, which has hindered his chances to build up some form in the team to prove his worth.

Lampard could give Gallagher – who was dubbed “Kante with goals” by Tony Cascarino – an opportunity to thrive at Goodison Park over the second half of the season by pairing him up with fellow progressive midfielder Amadou Onana in the centre of the pitch.

It’s a pairing that could just give Everton the opportunity to climb out of their perilous position.

Indeed, both players have the same number of goal contributions (2 v 2) this term and a similar pass completion rate (79.1% v 82.7%) with Onana outperforming Gallagher in a number of defensive attributes including aerial duels won (50% v 39.1%), interceptions (16 v 8) and tackles won (3o v 19).

However, the Chelsea ace makes up for what he lacks in defensive qualities outshining Onana with his attacking and progressive play including shots on target rate (44.4% v 10.5%), shot-creating actions per 90 minutes (3.32 v 1.17) and goal-creating actions (3 v 1), so combining the pair to balance out each other’s strengths and weakness could form an incredible midfield partnership.

With that being said, it would be a no-brainer for Everton to push for the signing of Gallagher this month as his creativity and attack-minded approach could significantly improve the displays at the heart of the team, ultimately saving the side from a dreaded relegation to the Championship.