Everton have reportedly entered the race to sign Atletico Madrid defender Kieran Trippier as manager Rafa Benitez looks to bolster his depleted backline.
According to 90min, the Toffees are one of several Premier League clubs who have asked to be kept informed of the 31-year-old’s situation, with Newcastle United, Manchester United, Aston Villa and Crystal Palace also listed as potential suitors.
Previous reports have claimed that Atleti are set to demand £25m for Trippier over the coming months, with the player keen on a move back to his homeland, although there is no guarantee the Atletico Madrid defender will move in the new year.
With current first-choice right-back Seamus Coleman set to turn 34 at the start of next season and understudy Jonjoe Kenny failing to get many minutes, Benitez may prioritise that position in the transfer market over the next couple of windows.
And Trippier could be an ideal candidate. Throughout his career, the England international has showcased his quality for both club and country, catching the eye with several impressive performances.
His national team boss Gareth Southgate has often kept faith with the experienced full-back, selecting him on either side of the defence and labelled him a ‘warrior’ earlier this year.
“He (Trippier) is a very underrated player,” said Southgate. “People are still looking at the player from a few years ago and not at the one who is at Atletico Madrid and playing like a warrior in the last few seasons. He is a big part of what we’ve done over the last few years and he gave a really good performance.”
Southgate has also lauded Trippier’s “outstanding quality” from set-pieces in the past and his underlying numbers illustrate why the Three Lions coach holds him in such high regard.
As per WhoScored, Trippier received a season rating of 7.20 for his 28 La Liga appearances last season – the second-highest in the first-team squad, and it’s easy to understand why.
The former Tottenham Hotspur star averaged 2.2 tackles, 1.4 interceptions and 1.2 key passes, placing him in the top two compared to his teammates for each metric as Atleti claimed the top-flight title.
Therefore, Trippier could become the ideal heir for Coleman on Merseyside, and the Everton supporters will surely be hoping Benitez can see off the extensive competition for his signature.