Even though Everton had a quiet weekend in terms of on-field action with their Premier League clash with Liverpool rearranged due to the League Cup Final,
Toffees fans had plenty to keep them entertained. Indeed amid Saturday’s flurry of matches it was announced that Iranian billionaire Farhad Moshiri had agreed a deal to buy a 49.9% stake in the Merseyside club, ending their years of searching for serious investment.
In the long-term having the new backer on board will of course make a huge difference for the club, but right now supporters and the manager just want funds to help keep the ship on course.
Reports suggest that around £100m will be committed for first-team improvements, and although some of that may go on tying down star names such as Ross Barkley and John Stones, Roberto Martinez can expect some serious coin to wade into the transfer market with.
With that in mind, here are FIVE stars Everton should be looking at…
A major target for Everton for some time, with money behind their transfer plans the Toffees may be able to get their hands on the Ukrainian at last. Yarmolenko seems to have out-grown football in his home land at the age of 26, and his goalscoring return could certainly be of use to Roberto Martinez.
Indeed, this season the attacking midfielder has netted eight goals in 15 league appearances for Dynamo Kiev – as well as a further two in the Champions League – adding to his 14 last season to help his side to Ukrainian Premier League glory.
As part of an attacking midfield three behind a main striker, Yarmolenko could add a new threat to Martinez’s forward line, working in tandem with Ross Barkley and Gerard Deulofeu.
With Tim Howard seemingly edging toward semi-retirement back in America’s Major League Soccer and doubts surrounding Joel Robles’ ability to be a long-term No.1, one area of investment, regardless of the new-found funds, for the Merseysiders was always going to be between the sticks.
There are no shortage of decent stoppers across Europe, but Begovic is an option a little closer to home that may well be worth a look.
The Bosnian only joined Chelsea last summer, but reports have already indicated that Everton are interested amid suggestions the ex-Stoke man is entirely content with his bench role at Stamford Bridge.
Begovic impressed earlier this season when Thibaut Courtois was injured and has a wealth of experience in the Premier League following a long spell with the Potters, making him, seemingly, an ideal option for Everton. His ability with he ball at his feet may, however, count against him with Martinez.
Now, hear us out. Few players make the short trip across Staley Park between Anfield and Goodison Park, but Allen seems better suited to the Martinez style of play than that of Jurgen Klopp, and will surely be available this summer.
The Welshman was named in the Capital One Cup Team of the Tournament for his contributions this term, yet he was overlooked for the final at Wembley, and is sure to slip further down the pecking order once his current manager gets his own midfield signings in at the end of the season.
With metronomic passing, more attacking quality than he’s often given credit for and knowledge of the English top tier, Allen could be a good long-term replacement for the ageing Gareth Barry and may function well alongside the more athletic and combative James McCarthy or Muhamed Besic.
He might well be worth the bother that goes with, albeit rare, cross-city transfers.
Beyond Romelu Lukaku and the untested Oumar Niasse, Everton are a little short on top-class centre-forward options.
Although the Belgian is a great option to have, sometimes the Toffees can be a little one-dimensional, so an alternative approach could be useful, and Slimani is reportedly a target.
The Algeria international has been scoring for fun in Portugal with Sporting CP for the past few seasons, blending intelligent movement and deadly finishing to great effect. One issue with the 27-year-old, however, may be his lack of pace.
There have been very few impressive performers at Aston Villa this term – reflected in their slot at the foot of the table – but Ayew has been one.
The Ghanaian attacker’s five goals have shown that he’s been able to make the transition from French football to the English top tier relatively smoothly, and in a better team he could, perhaps, have brought better numbers to the table.
Perhaps an upgrade on Aroune Kone, Ayew offers much of the Ivorian’s movement and versatility and would add a greater level of depth to Martinez’s ranks. If the Villans go down, he’ll surely be available for a reasonable price.