In the modern era of the Premier League, it’s rare to see a loan signing become such an integral part of a team over the course of the season, but for Everton, they experienced this rare phenomenon with Andre Gomes.
The Barcelona midfielder joined the Toffees last summer on a season-long loan and was quick to make a positive impact on the blue half of Merseyside, quickly becoming an important player in Marco Silva’s first-team and making the midfield his own.
After such an impressive season, it is, of course, typical that Everton are keen to make the Portuguese international a permanent signing this summer, but with interest from other Premier League clubs rife for Gomes, it could be a tough ask for Silva to win the race for his midfield general.
Gomes leaving for a Premier League rival would be gutting for Everton fans, but if rumours are to be believed, supporters could have a new midfielder to amaze over this summer in the form of PSG man Adrien Rabiot.
According to TF1 (via Get French Football News), the 24-year-old midfielder is in discussions with a possible move to Everton, with Manchester United also in the mix, and after being one of the more reliable players in the PSG team for the past few seasons, Rabiot could be the ideal man to replace Gomes on Merseyside, but what do the statistics say?
Although the Barcelona man is renowned for his creative prowess, he actually averages 0.2 key passes less per game than Rabiot. It is clear that the PSG midfielder is not only a more well-rounded player but also a more comfortable player on the ball.
Despite being the same height at 6 foot 1, Rabiot’s ability to win the ball in the air and distribute from midfield has made him an essential clog in the PSG midfield for the past few years, something that can be seen by the 8.3% difference in the respective pass percentage completion rates.
Using his physicality is something that Rabiot does particularly well, and that too can be shown in the number of tackles each player makes on average in a game. The Frenchman completed 2.5 tackles per game in domestic league competition compared to Gomes’ 1.4.
Calmer on the ball, more likely to make a successful pass, and physically capable of bullying opposition players, Rabiot will certainly be an upgrade for Everton this summer if the Toffees are to land the PSG star’s signature.
Gomes will be a sad loss for Everton, but in Rabiot, the club will have an improved replacement who will bring a skillset the supporters love to see.
A permanent deal would be a massive sign of intent from the Toffees as they look to progress in the Premier League.