As a result, he has come under fire from fans, however, there is a chance to redeem himself by having a successful and impactful transfer window that can revive the club’s season by earning points and climbing the table.
According to The Athletic, Everton are interested in signing Barcelona defender, Ronald Araujo, with Benitez potentially completing his defensive line overhaul in the summer by offering the 22-year-old better terms than the La Liga giants.
The Spanish manager has already secured two young full-backs, Nathan Patterson and Vitaliy Mykolenko, who joined the club over the last week since the transfer window has opened, with the signings suggesting that he is keen to add more depth and reliability in the back line.
The £35k-per-week gem who “has everything” according to Gerard Pique, has been at Barcelona since 2018 and is on significantly less than many of his peers in the first team, with just 18 months left on his basic contract, it is reported that the youngster will start looking at his options.
Mason Holgate has been a complete liability for Everton this season, from getting red-carded in a high footed dangerous challenge against Tottenham Hotspur to lacking in presence as part of the defensive line this, losing the majority of his ground duels (56%) this season and losing possession 22 times in the defeat to Brighton last weekend according to SofaScore.
One fan Tweeted a shout to sell the 25-year-old Toffees defender during his most recent performance, summing up how bad he’s been; “Sell Holgate at half time.”
Araujo, on the other hand, is having an amazing season so far with Barcelona, gaining a more consistent place in the first team, with 21 appearances and two La Liga goals so far.
According to SofaScore, when it comes to the Uruguayan youngster’s defensive credentials this season, he has won 68% of total duels, and when you compare to Holgate’s shocking possession loss (22) in his latest appearance, Araujo only lost the ball eight times in his most recent appearance against Betis.
Benitez may now have the opportunity to axe Holgate, as he is linked with a move to Burnley this January, leaving a place for Araujo to slot into the defensive line, who clearly offers a better output both offensively and defensively which would make a big difference to Everton’s current struggles.
In other news: Benitez heading for nightmare with Lucas Digne