Everton completed the signing of Idrissa Gana Gueye on deadline day and his signing must finally allow Frank Lampard to drop Tom Davies from his plans.
It was confirmed on Thursday that the Senegal international had re-joined the Toffees on a two-year deal from PSG, having left the club for the French champions in 2019.
During his previous spell at Goodison Park, Gueye became something of a fans’ favourite, making 108 appearances in total, in which he contributed four goals and five assists.
The 32-year-old will add experience and quality to Lampard’s midfield, as he looks to steer Everton well away from the relegation places after a disastrous 2021/22 campaign, although the Toffees are still without a win after five games of the new season.
However, their chances will surely be improved by Gueye, who averaged a superb 7.14 rating from WhoScored in his final season at Goodison Park, which is far better than any player in Everton’s side so far this season.
Therefore, if he can replicate that form back in England, it will surely be a huge boost to Everton’s chances, and will also surely see Davies finally dropped for good.
The academy graduate has never averaged above a 6.7 rating in any of his Premier League seasons, while he has also never contributed more than two goals in a single campaign, so it is surely time that Lampard moved on.
Indeed, it is hard to work out what the Englishman actually offers with little goal threat or defensive contribution, as Davies managed just 0.5 tackles and 0.3 interceptions per game last time out.
Ian Wright was less than impressed with the 24-year-old last season after he passed up a golden opportunity against Manchester United.
He said: “It is probably a massive lack of confidence at the moment. He wants to be perfect but he is not taking the responsibility.”
Indeed, it appears as though criticism follows the player around with broadcaster Nubaid Haroon labelling him “shocking” last year while journalist Jonathan Thompson went as far as to say the midfielder should be given “his coat” after a mediocre performance in pre-season.
While Davies will probably be needed as cover for Everton throughout 2022/23 as Lampard looks to negotiate a number of injuries at the start of the new season, now that the Toffees have Gueye, James Garner and Amadou Onana as new options in midfield, the academy graduate shouldn’t see as much action. In short, he must be given the boot from Lampard’s short-term and long-term plans at Goodison Park.