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Everton could ditch McNeil for Lucas Moura

Everton have endured a rather barren January transfer window thus far, with their lack of movement particularly worrying given their position in the table and the activity of their rivals.

Two teams currently sit level on points with the Toffees, yet Southampton already boast two new major additions and West Ham United now seem poised to add their second in Danny Ings, who was reportedly a target of Frank Lampard’s too.

It seems this season could not get any worse, with failure, mediocrity and toxicity shrouding this once-great club.

Even the summer transfers for the 44-year-old have failed to make an impact, with Dwight McNeil arguably the most disappointing given the £20m outlay to sign him from relegated Burnley.

What marks the most damning assessment of his short time at Goodison Park is that Kevin Thelwell has clearly been instructed to find a new winger for this window, as rumours swirl linking the likes of Dango Ouattara, Arnaut Danjuma, and as of yesterday, Lucas Moura.

The Brazilian’s £90k-per-week deal at Tottenham Hotspur is up at the end of this campaign, and as such Everton will see this as an opportunity to sign an experienced wide man for a cut price.

Although his play time has dwindled under Antonio Conte, having fallen even further down in the pecking order after the summer signing of Richarlison, the 30-year-old is yet to score this season.

However, it was only last campaign that he notched six goals and eight assists in all competitions, with these tangible numbers imperative for the Merseyside outfit of late who are struggling in front of goal.

They have only scored 15 times in 19 league games, making them the joint-lowest scorers only behind Wolverhampton Wanderers.

This is in no small part to the lack of input from their wingers, with McNeil having only found the net twice in 17 outings.

Would you swap Moura for McNeil?

Yes

Yes

No

No

It seems that the deal to sign him was a misjudged one, given how Lampard has struggled to nail down a system before seemingly settling on a counter-attacking one.

The 23-year-old is hardly blessed with blistering pace, and as such has struggled for spots in the starting side due to his lack of athleticism.

Moura however is notoriously speedy, highlighted by journalist Jonathan Johnson, who lauded his “electric pace“.

He could come in and help turn around their abysmal form, which they have not won since October. 

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First up on the quiz: after what match was Rafa Benitez sacked?

A man for the big occasion, what sets Moura even further apart from McNeil is his experience at the top of the game. Many will recall his sensational Champions League hat-trick against Ajax to send Spurs to the final, where Christian Eriksen would label him a “hero“.

Should the Brazilian opt to join Lampard in this relegation battle, he could face his toughest challenge yet, but with speed and quality in abundance, the winger might be imperative in securing safety. He can hardly do worse than his competition in that position, with none of the wingers at Goodison Park having scored over three goals in the league.