Everton face a tricky dilemma over the future of defender Yerry Mina as his absence exposed their defensive frailties over the weekend.
The 27-year-old has enjoyed a fabulous start to the current campaign after several injury-hit years on Merseyside, cementing his status as one of Rafa Benitez’s most important players.
However, Mina’s contract is due to expire in the summer of 2023, meaning Everton must soon decide whether to offer him an extension or cash in while they can still demand a high price.
And now, The Athletic’s Patrick Boyland has provided an update on the centre-back’s situation, claiming a tough choice lies ahead for the club’s hierarchy.
He tweeted initially: “Everton have a decision to make over Yerry Mina. Two years left on his deal, future uncertain over the summer, but once again missed yesterday. He’s becoming increasingly important to the side’s hopes”.
Following the impressive form of Ben Godrey last term, the Colombia international was believed to be one of several first-team stars told they were available for transfer if a suitable bid arrived last summer, but his response to that setback has been very impressive.
As per WhoScored, Mina has averaged four clearances per league game in 2021/22, 1.5 interceptions and one tackle, highlighting his importance to the Goodison Park outfit.
Boyland’s latest report also praises the South American’s early-season showings, before stating how his absence from Sunday’s defeat could also see him be rewarded with fresh terms.
“Although fitness concerns mean he is not always able to play back-to-back games, Everton have often looked worse for his absence this season,” the piece reads.
“Quickly he has gone from bit-part figure to a potentially key cog. If there is one blessing to be had from Sunday’s defeat, it is that Everton now have their reminder as to the Colombian’s importance ahead of that all-important decision on his future.”
It remains to be seen whether Everton’s chiefs put a new deal in front of Mina over the coming months, although Boyland’s latest hint should leave the club’s supporters excited over a potential contract renewal.