Everton Director of Football Marcel Brands has been forced into playing the pantomime villain role at Goodison Park this summer by terminating the contract of Shani Tarashaj.
According to the Liverpool Echo, Tarashaj is no longer an Everton player after the Merseyside outfit terminated the striker’s contract upon his return to Finch Farm, following a failed loan spell with FC Emmen.
The Dutch side announced on Tuesday that the 25-year-old would be heading back to England mid-way through a two-season loan deal, having failed to make the grade in the Eredivisie through a string of injuries that prevented Tarashaj from ever making his debut.
Everton had extended the Swiss forward’s contract by 12 months last summer to see Tarashaj join Emmen on loan, who would have paid his remaining contract over two years rather than one.
It is not yet known if Everton have paid Tarashaj’s remaining contract off in full to release the attacker, or if the Goodison Park natives were able to reach a settlement agreement.
Tarashaj originally joined the Toffees from academy side Grasshopper Club Zurich in 2016 on a four-and-a-half-year deal, having been signed for around £3million but never played a first-team game and made just two U23 outings in royal blue before his release.
With news that Tarashaj is no longer an Everton player, his departure signals yet another needed step taken by Brands to clear out the woeful deadwood signed by his predecessors and avoid adding the striker’s remaining salary to a bloated wage bill.
Earlier this summer, Everton agreed to allow Sandro Ramirez to join La Liga side SD Huesca as a free agent three years on from his arrival, having managed just one goal in 16 Blues appearances before spending two-and-a-half-years away from Merseyside in various loans.
It is not Brands’ fault, nor head coach Carlo Ancelotti, that they have been left in a position where they must make the difficult decisions on the futures of players not of the standard needed at Goodison Park.
In Tarashaj’s case, particularly, Brands agreeing to extend the Swiss forward’s contract last summer to ensure he could join Emmen goes to show how the Dutchman did whatever was needed to help the player in an unfortunate situation, but things did not play out as planned.
The failing of Tarashaj’s time as an Everton player falls solely at the feet of the people who brought the 25-year-old to England originally, even if then-manager Roberto Martinez considered the 5-cap international to be a “special” talent.
“I would encourage our fans to look forward to a special talent,” Martinez said upon Tarashaj’s signing in 2016, via quotes by the Daily Post. “He is probably the best young talent in Swiss football.”