Everton’s start to life under Rafa Benitez has been full of mixed emotions.
The Toffees have gained four points from their opening two matches in the league but have only brought in four cost-effective new signings.
It’s evident that the Toffees don’t have a lot to spend this summer but one player who has consistently popped up on their radar is Lazio’s Joaquin Correa.
Benitez has been interested in the attacking midfielder for the vast majority of the last few months and in recent days, he’s finally begun to make his move.
Everton were preparing a bid last week but after failing to initially meet the Italian club’s valuation, they have now upped their offer, according to reports.
The print version of the Sunday Mirror (22/08; pg 67) suggests that the Merseyside outfit have gone back to the negotiating table and submitted a bid of £32m with add-ons.
If the new manager can conclude a deal for Correa then it would be the perfect way for Everton to end the window.
After all, following Richarlison’s performance in a more central position against Leeds at the weekend, the Spaniard is wise to search for alternatives.
The Olympic gold medallist was in supreme form over the summer, bagging five times for his country at Tokyo 2020. However, he was less convincing when Everton travelled to Elland Road last weekend.
He made just 11 passes in the entire contest and was unsuccessful with every shot and dribble he attempted.
Consequently, the addition of Correa could provide the Toffees with an instant upgrade.
He can score goals, create opportunities for teammates and dazzle the opposition.
Speaking about the 27-year-old Simone Inzaghi once said: “Correa is a formidable player, he is very intelligent tactically, he sacrifices a lot for the team. I am happy with his double, when he has no problems and can train continuously he always proves to be able to play at the highest levels.”
To bring a player with such intelligence and technical abilities to Goodison would be a considerable coup for the club.
Having achieved those numbers in a top-five European league, it bodes well for spending a vast sum of money on him. It might also give Benitez the license to move Richarlison out to a wider role, which looks like it would suit him more.
Whether the Everton hierarchy can stump up the funds, however, is another matter.