Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio claimed on Sky Sports News on Thursday night, via Sky Sports’ Transfer Centre (January 23, 9:08pm), that Everton’s primary central midfield target is Southampton captain Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.
Sky Sports reported earlier in the January transfer window that the Merseyside outfit were looking to add a central midfielder and centre-back to their squad before the deadline later this week, but as of yet they haven’t brought anyone in to feature in Carlo Ancelotti’s immediate plans.
The link to Hojbjerg is certainly an interesting one, with the 24-year-old skippering the south coast outfit for more than a year now, and because his contract due to run out in the summer of 2021.
Despite having less than 18 months left on his contract, Di Marzio says that Saints want £35m to sell the former Bayern Munich man – something Everton are unwilling to pay.
Should he arrive at Goodison Park he’d be competing with the likes of Andre Gomes and Jean-Philippe Gbamin – when they are fit again – as well as Fabian Delph, Tom Davies, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Morgan Schneiderlin for a spot in the centre.
Everton fans have been having their say on this story following a tweet by The USM Toffees Blues account, and many weren’t impressed.
🗞 Everton are in the market for a midfielder with Southampton’s Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg being their primary target.
The Danish midfielder would cost around £35M but Everton are reluctant to pay
(Source – Di Marzio, Sky Sports ) pic.twitter.com/1x45FicUcM
— The USM Toffee Blues (@EvertonNewsFeed) January 23, 2020
In fact, some even suggested that former director of football Steve Walsh would have targeted Hojbjerg, and that isn’t in a positive way seeing as signings he made such as Sigurdsson, Sandro Ramirez, Cenk Tosun and Theo Walcott among others have underwhelmed.
Is Steve Walsh back???
— Tom Mooney (@TomMooney_) January 23, 2020
He absolutely dreadful. Proper Walsh signing.
— Paul EFC 86 (@PaulEFC86) January 23, 2020
Others were also far from impressed with one labelling him as “Schneiderlin Mark 2”.
While the Frenchman has failed to make an impact at Goodison, Hojbjerg is at an earlier stage of his career and the fact he is a Premier League captain at 24 years of age should say a lot about him.
Schnierdelin Mark 2 !!
— Peter (@gimpsey26) January 23, 2020
No thanks he’s awful
— Adam Jones (@Adam_EFC_1998) January 23, 2020
This needs to stop
— Ameen Nassir (@radar2032) January 24, 2020
Others were less than impressed with the reported asking price for the Dane, but in the wider aspect of things it is difficult to say that he is overpriced in the current inflated transfer market.
As we mentioned before he is a skipper playing regularly who is yet to reach his prime, and as The Athletic reported earlier this month he had more possession recoveries (208) than any other Premier League player this season.
Decent young player like. But 35m is a fair bit too steep.
Would rather James Ward-Prowse.
— Andreas Wätt (@Wattawildworld) January 23, 2020
I’d have him but 35mil no way!
— Luke Blanchard (@lukeblanchard17) January 23, 2020
Great player but not for that amount
— Callum (@Cal_EFC) January 23, 2020
As if you would pay that for him …. that’s a non starter
— phil knight (@phil_spudhead) January 23, 2020
In other Everton news, a Brazilian journalist has offered an update on the club’s pursuit of Gremio winger Everton Soares…