Everton have had a poor season, and with only eight games left of the current campaign it looks unlikely that they will turn it around. The Toffees had a chance to save face by winning the Europa league and for a moment England pinned their continental hopes on them doing just that. But ultimately they were dumped out of that competition in the last 16 by Dynamo Kiev. To make it worse England’s last chance of European glory this season were beaten 5-2 on the night and 6-4 on aggregate.
The Merseyside club were expected to finish close to their last season high of fifth place but now a mid or bottom half of the table position looks likely. Players like Ross Barkley and Seamus Coleman stayed loyal but have recently been linked with big summer moves out of Goodison. Here are three players Everton should buy to strengthen their team in the upcoming window.
Cleverley is currently coming to the end of a year long loan deal with Aston Villa but is apparently willing to snub the Birmingham based club in favour of a move to Merseyside. Manchester United are still his parent club but manager Louis van Gaal is unlikely to renew his contract so he’ll be available to leave for free. Roberto Martinez is said to be an admirer of the midfielder and his experience playing for United could help Everton with their stability issues next season. Martinez and Cleverley worked together at Wigan during 2010-11 so perhaps they have a good enough working relationship to sway the player into reuniting with the struggling Spaniard.
The winger has been on loan with the Toffees since January and so far has been doing a good job. Martinez described him earlier in the season as a breath of fresh air so it seems likely that the club will be taking up their option to permanently buy him this summer. Tottenham have priced him at £6m which is very reasonable and shouldn’t be an obstacle for a club like Everton. Lennon struggled to find his place under new Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino but has been rejuvenated during his time on Merseyside. The 27 year old has made seven appearances with his only goal being Everton’s winner against QPR. The player has settled well with both the team and manager so Martinez would be better off sticking with a talent he has personal knowledge of rather than searching for someone new this summer.
Both Sylvain Distin and Antolin Alcaraz are out of contract this summer so Everton may need to bring defenders in to fill the gap. Brighton and Hove Albion’s Lewis Dunk has been named as a possible signing. Dunk featured against Arsenal in their FA cup fourth round match so he has experience playing against a top Premier League team. As he is currently plying his trade in the Championship Everton would be a big step up but at 23 he is surely ready to make a move into the top flight and Martinez can develop and nurture the young defenders talent if he believes he is worth the effort. Both West Ham and West Bromwich Albion are also rumoured to be readying a bid for Dunk so perhaps a future in the Premier League is inevitable.