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Everton 'interested' in pursuing deal for Batshuayi

| Friday, 11 January 2019 131comments  |  Jump to last
Everton are once again being linked with a move for Michy Batshuayi, the Belgian international striker who is returning to Chelsea this month following an unproductive loan spell with Valencia.

Batshuayi was first linked with the Blues when Roberto Martinez was in charge at Goodison Park but he eventually secured a move to Stamford Bridge, following in the footsteps of his compatriot, Romelu Lukaku.

The 25-year-old was largely overlooked by Antonio Conte during Chelsea's title-winning season in 2016-17 but still made 32 appearances over two years after joining the Londoners from Marseille and actually scored the goal that clinched the Premier League championship.

Batshuayi spent a time last season on loan with Borussia Dortmund where he notched seven times in 10 games before picking up an ankle ligament injury that prematurely ended his season.

The Mail and Sky Sports sources say that Everton are interested in signing Batshuayi.

Chelsea are thought to be looking to loan him out again after his spell with Valencia was terminated with him having scored just once in La Liga but with Kurt Zouma already at Goodison for the season, Everton would only be able to acquire Batshuayi in a permanent deal, said to be around £14m, and then only if they sell one of their existing strikers.

Oumar Niasse has already been linked with a move away while Cenk Tosun has struggled to make an impact in England and the Liverpool Echo suggest that while they remain with the club, no new striker is likely to be signed.

Reader Comments (131)

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Vijay Nair
1 Posted 11/01/2019 at 07:18:58
At the right price, a definite yes from me. Always seen him as a similar sort of player to Lukaku.
John Wells
2 Posted 11/01/2019 at 07:52:44
I agree, as a poster mentioned in a different thread, £7-8 million for Niasse and then punt the same again on this guy, worth a gamble.
Rob Dolby
3 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:16:29
Similar to Lukaku minus the goals isn't a great prospect.

Move on and look elsewhere rather than the big boys rejects.

Derek Knox
4 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:21:39
I am not sure on this one, having seen him in games be either outstanding or totally anonymous; diametrical opposites in his performances don't exactly stand out for me, but having said that, like John Wells @2, has said a decent fee for Niasse, and some other deadwood make it a worthwhile punt, if reported to be £14-15M.

He has to be better than Tosun, what a waste of money he has shown to be, another Allardyce / Walsh masterstroke!

Jim Bennings
5 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:35:57
I have to be honest, I've never been totally sold on Batshuayi. His goal return is pretty poor other than Dortmund and for me he's another one like what we've already got, runs into areas where he can't hurt teams enough.

We need someone who can offer a different dimension, a physical presence who can score a few yet also gives defences a really hard time.

If we can get Batshuayi at £14 million then maybe we can work with him and really get something out of him for that price, it does seem quite cheap nowadays.

The trouble is, every signing we make now is measured under the microscope – and especially the strikers; we can ill afford another Tosun or Niasse.

If we sell Niasse or Tosun (which we should definitely be looking at doing for their and our own benefit), then Batshuayi might be worth the punt with the money we rake in.

Andrew Ellams
6 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:44:00
I think this guy might just find a home at Everton. He suits the style Silva is trying to implement a lot more than Tosun or Niasse. If we can't unload one of those two before improving the squad we have a real problem.
Martin Berry
7 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:47:16
It's not whether "the price is right" – it's whether the player is good enough.

Some players click at certain teams playing styles to suit their strength. We need a striker and certainly a loan for this player with an option to buy is worth a punt.

Jim Bennings
8 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:55:11
We can't take him on loan, Martin.

I think at £14 million we need to look at it and we could probably easily recoup that in summer if it didn't work out for him, we would get the money back as he's a Belgium international and one of those players that does generate interest around Europe.

We certainly need to start signing striking options because, come February, one of Niasse and Tosun will be gone and by the August window BOTH will be gone for sure.

Batshuayi is 25 and needs to nail down a regular club so maybe he could finally do that at Everton; his career has been hit and miss thus far though.

Derek Knox
9 Posted 11/01/2019 at 08:55:54
Martin @7, a loan is out of the equation, as we already have Kurt Zouma on loan from Chelsea, the rules state that any club can only have one player on loan from another club.
Martin Nicholls
10 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:03:34
Derek #9 – quite correct. Chelsea will soon run out of clubs to loan their surplus players to!
Iain Johnston
11 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:14:02
I think the media saying that Valencia are unhappy with his goal return hence the loan cancellation is being a little unfair. Yes, he's only scored once but he hasn't even played the equivalent of 6 games yet.

For £14-15m, I'd seriously consider the move; he has strength and pace and as he's shown for Chelsea late in games, has a clinical eye.

Brian Harrison
12 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:14:06
We obviously need a striker, but would Batshuayi be the answer? I am not convinced.

We already have 3 strikers who are on good money in Niasse,Tosun and Sandro (who will be back in the summer). None are good enough to push us forward but getting rid of them wont be easy because of their salaries. They wont be in any hurry to leave their lucrative contracts and loan deals don't really address the problem, they just delay it.

I tend to agree with Marcel Brands lets wait till the summer then look at our striking options. We will also know how many loan players will be returning. Given how poorly some have done, I can't see them getting permanent deals from the clubs they have been loaned too.

Bill Gienapp
13 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:18:07
He'd be a decent signing at the quoted price, but I don't really see him as a huge upgrade on what we already have. I have to laugh at some of the proposed names I've seen thrown around on Twitter – Gabbiadini? Seriously?

We need a player of the calibre of Aubameyang – and that's a lot easier said than done.

Russell Smith
14 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:24:25
Whilst I agree that we should be looking to off-load both Niasse and Tosun, it won't be quite that simple. They are both on contracts with huge weekly salaries so unless someone is offering to pay them more money they can simply refuse to be sold, sit out their Contracts and then get a huge signing on fee when their contracts expire as the buying clubs can offer us nothing, or as per Barkley a much reduced fee.

Batshuayi has hardly been prolific wherever he has played so I suspect this is just speculation.

Tony Abrahams
15 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:27:04
This Everton team needs a centre-forward. Some good away performances have done little for the teams or most of the fans confidence because we have not put away the chances that could have won us some of these games.

Mixed messages off Moshiri, IMO. Of course, we want and need to be higher in the table but, to push on, everyone knows we need a good centre-forward.

Robert Leigh
16 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:30:07
Worth a punt in today's market for £14m, especially when you consider Bournemouth just signed Solanke for £19m.

I would prefer a loan-to-buy though, just sign Zouma on a permanent deal then loan Batshuayi from them. :)

Sam Hoare
17 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:33:28
Not many surefire strikers are going to come to us, let's be honest.

Batshuayi is pretty quick, fairly strong and pretty useful in the box. More mobile than Tosun and a better finisher than Calvert-Lewin.

The last time he was actually settled in a team, his second season at Marseille, he scored 23 goals in 50 games, which is more than reasonable. Since then, he's been in and out of the Chelsea team and sent off on loan for bits and bobs.

£14M is a good deal for a striker with International goals at a good age. If we could shift Niasse for £6-8M then I think this would represent a sensible upgrade. He'd be our first striker; if he worked hard and endeared himself to the fans, I think at his best he would get a decent amount of goals for us.

Joe McMahon
18 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:36:36
I feel we have had enough over the years, and have enough currently, of non-scoring strikers without adding another.
Scott Hall
19 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:41:36
In today's market £14M is peanuts. I am shaking my head in disbelief as I type that but sadly it's true when you consider you've got Bournemouth stating that Callum Wilson is a £50M striker!

If, and it's a big if, we can get him for £14M then we'd be crazy not to take a risk and go for it. But one thing I would say is, we need a decent striker coach. Big Dunc and Judas Jeffers are not cutting it. If anything, they're making our strikers worse.

Chris Gould
20 Posted 11/01/2019 at 09:58:43
We are in a difficult financial position. Too many mediocre players on huge wages. We now have to sell before we can buy, and we still need to get rid of several players before we can look at big money signings. Our wage bill is out of control.

Don't like the sound of this rumour. Batshuayi will demand big wages, and he would be given a 4- or 5-year contract. If we bring him in, and he continues his erratic form, then we're stuck with him.

I'm as frustrated as the next fan, but accept that the most sensible decision may be to wait until the summer to get in a centre forward that we really want. Before we do that, we need to get rid of at least 7-8 players who are overpaid and have no future with us.

Chris Green
21 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:00:50
Personally, I think for £14M, this is a no brainer.. we know he needs work, we know when he is settled he scores goals, and one thing Everton is good at is getting players to settle... just look at people like Gomes.

I know this might be a bit off the wall... and he is a little older.. but if we want a physical presence, what about Llorente from Spurs?! He scores, is a good physical guy, good in the air, and would be excellent for Lookman, Walcott, and Bernard to run off.

Steve Ferns
22 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:01:26
This is the kind of deal that Brands was talking about stunting the growth of our players.

Batshuayi is not a top player. He's now 25. He's not young. He's as good as he will get. He's supposedly a goal scorer, yet he's scored one goal in fifteen games in La Liga this season. Last season he scored 7 in 10 in Germany but only 2 in 12 in the Premier League. The year before that 5 in 20 in the Premier League. And the year before that he scored 17 in 36 in France.

I think if we sign a striker it needs to be someone better than this lad and I really doubt this lad is much better than Calvert-Lewin, I don't even think he scores as many goals right now as Calvert-Lewin, and I think Calvert-Lewin has the potential to be much better but, to realise that potential, he must be playing.

Geoffrey Williams
23 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:04:43
A definite No from me.
Steve Ferns
24 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:22:19
Chris, Llorente went to Swansea because he was said to be finished. It seems his excellent season there was his last hurrah. The guy is well into his 30s and he's taken a battering over his career. He went to Spurs knowing he wouldn't play much, because he wanted one last pay day.

I doubt he'd leave unless we matched his salary, but I bet he'd prefer to stay at Spurs and play less often, in bigger games, and have that recovery time to nurse his battered and frail body through the season than play week-in & week-out. He's done, mate. Not worth the salary.

Chris Green
25 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:25:24
Hi Steve, fair comment. I just heard the other day he was thinking of leaving, and he seems to still have the scoring knack... something we lack! :-)

Thanks for the reply though, great to have these discussions!

Kase Chow
26 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:37:52
I would love this to come off. Look at his goals for Chelsea on YouTube – mostly tap-ins – a knack that you can't teach.

I still can't believe no-one was able to take advantage of Bernard's ball across the 6-yard box vs Leicester. This guy would gobble that up

He loves to score goals. He's a different player to Calvert-Lewin and he can actually control the ball unlike Niasse.

He'd definitely be an upgrade and a focal point and a goal threat. Please make it happen this month!

(Plus another striker in the summer!)

Steve Ferns
27 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:41:57
He was a top player, Chris. He had serious injury problems early in his career. Then, under Bielsa at Bilbao he had a great season and then left for bigger and better things.

I tend to follow Bilbao of all the Spanish sides. The reason is Howard Kendall, of course. But I really admire their cantera policy. In my dream world we'd implement it and replicate the success they've had over the decades.

Before, anyone points out they've won less league titles than us, it's just the way they've achieved that success and the 23 cup wins despite voluntarily restricting themselves that I admire.

Grant Rorrison
28 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:45:50
Not the most exciting link in the world but a massive upgrade on what we've got. £14M at today's prices is pennies.

Steve Ferns
29 Posted 11/01/2019 at 10:56:32
Grant, £14m might be pennies, but this lad will be on over £5m a season for 5 years. So you’re talking £40m plus, which is not pennies. And again, he’s not prolific. He doesn’t link play very well. I don’t think he’s good enough to be our main man, and if so, what’s the point in wasting £40m on a sub?
Grant Rorrison
30 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:04:58
Steve 28. You think he'd be a sub with what we've got currently? :O

He scored 19 in 53 games at Chelsea. Hardly shabby. He got 9 in 14 at Dortmund before an ankle injury curtailed his season. He has 12 in 22 for Belgium at full international level. He was a sub at Valencia hence the goals record there.

He'd be a far better option than what we've got.

Steve Ferns
31 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:08:20
No Grant, I don't think he is better than what we haves, or certainly not significantly enough to justify the massive wages he will command. And his goal return has been poor as I've stated above. 1 goal in 15 this season is not good enough.

Calvert-Lewin is showing signs of scoring. Why not give him a chance without throwing a load of money away on this lad who hasn't consistently scored in the league since he was a very young man in France.

Craig Walker
32 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:09:17
It frustrates me that despite having Brands, who seems to know what he's doing, we are still sniffing around Premier League cast-offs from other clubs. Of all the players out there, can we really only consider players like Walcott and Batshuayi who are already known to most clubs and seem to be on the wane?

Surely there are gems of the Vardy ilk out there who can be unearthed with our scouting network? We need to find a modern version of Andy Gray who would run through brick walls for Everton and has a winning mentality. I'm fed up of getting other clubs' has-beens and, in some cases, never-weres.

Jay Wood

33 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:13:26
With Steve Ferns 100% on this one.

As Steve points out, I hope Brands is true to his word, won't be stampeded into buying unnecessarily in January, and won't be making signings like Batshuayi which 'stunt the growth and progress of our own players'.

We need a proven, ready-to-go (and score!) striker. Not a permanently loaned out player, still yet to hold down a place in teams similar to ourselves, still waiting to prove his 'potential' at 25.

Grant Rorrison
34 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:14:31
Steve @30. Batshuayi has been sitting on the bench at Valencia. That's why he hasn't been scoring. Calvert-Lewin has 8 goals in 60 premier league games. What 'signs' are you talking about?

John Hammond
35 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:20:14
I'm in 2 minds about this guy. At Valencia he started just 4 out of his 15 appearances while at Chelsea he was mostly used as a sub. Does that say he can't be trusted to start games or did he have bigger stars ahead of him at those teams?

If you look at his second season at Marseille and his short spell at Dortmund, he started 51 games in total and came on as a sub just 6 times in league and European games and his goalscoring records were superb.

So, he can score goals and he's done it in Belgium, France, England, Germany and Spain as well as both European competitions. Can we really compare him to any of our current forwards?

We need to sell before we buy so using those funds and paying £14M for him sounds like an absolute bargain to me. Let's face it, we can't attract the absolute top forwards so anyone we go for will be a risk.

Jay Wood

36 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:21:30
"Batshuayi has been sitting on the bench at Valencia."

Exactly, Grant.

Valencia, 12th in the La Liga, 22 points from 18 games, struggling to score with just SIXTEEN league goals all season, yet the manager isn't selecting the goal machine that is Batshuayi.

A possible warning sign, doncha think..?

Steve Ferns
37 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:23:08
Grant, Batshauyi has 1 league goal in 15. He's only scored double figures in league goals in a season once in the 5 years since he left Belgium and that was in France.

Calvert-Lewin has 5 goals this season. He averages a goal every 160 minutes which is better than Richarlison or Sigurdsson. He deserves a run in the side.

He's only 21 and I think he will get a lot better, and more importantly that right now he's as good as, if not better than the misfiring Belgian with an attitude problem and on 6 or 7 times the wages of the young Yorkshire man.

James Highet
38 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:23:31
I think this guy is worth a go, he is looking for the right kind of place to make his mark. He can score goals and hold the ball up, something that is sorely lacking from our team at the moment.

We have been very successful when we have had a big lad up front, Lukaku and even Bent when he started. Scold me but why can't we play two up front? I think Cenk would benefit greatly from this. I was at a Dixie Dean night last year and Greame Sharpe said that Tosun was a good finisher, he knows what he is talking about.

I also think that Mina would greatly benefit from having Jagielka back in the team, we need to eradicate the simple mistakes, I am sorry but I am not convinced with Michael Keane, he loses his man all the time, that's why Spurs spanked us so badly.

I'm also not convinced with Silva but this is the time that we find out what he is made of. It's good to see managers in tough spells – Moyes had a few and they were BAD!!! But he built a team after it which was brilliant.

Chris Gould
39 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:46:07
Every transfer we make has an element of risk attached, but due to recent reckless spending, we are not in a position to take a big risk that comes with huge wages.

I'm not sure that everyone is understanding, or accepting, our current financial situation.

We urgently need to get rid of several players on huge wages that have no future at the club. Until we do that we have to be very careful and calculated in the transfer market (for FFP purposes). Meaning we can't take risks on players like Batshuyai.

We have a commitment to youth because they are cheap and allow us to move some overpaid players out of the club. I doubt anyone at the club believes Davies, Calvert-Lewin, Kenny etc are going to become future stars, but they are helping us out of a difficult situation and deserve our support. Calvert-Lewin has earned a run in the team, and we need to save our pennies for a striker who will bring proven quality.

John Hammond
40 Posted 11/01/2019 at 11:50:22
Steve #36:

Two of those goals were against Rotherham in the League Cup so he has 3 league goals in 19 appearances compared to Batshauyi who has 1 in 15 and has played more than 200 minutes less. He's also scored in the Champions League this season.

Grant Rorrison
41 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:05:26
Jay @35.

I don't know anything about Valencia and their situation. But, if I had a guy on my bench that had scored 19 goals in 39 games the previous season, playing in 2 of the best leagues in the world (England and Germany) then I'd be playing him.

Steve @36. Since Batshuayi left France he hasn't even played 15 league games a season on average. How many goals do you think he should be scoring? He managed 9 in 22 last season playing for Chelsea/Dortmund. Calvert-Lewin has yet to score 9 league goals in his career (60 games so far)

Karen Mason
42 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:15:25
It's a definite NO from me. If we need a striker who can finish, he's not the answer.

I've watched him fluff many more goal scoring chances than I have seen him put away. Sitters too. No point in spending more money on a bang average player who won't bring what we need, even if it for only £14 Mill. Better to save the money and wages and spend on a player who is the business, although may not be the completed article. Though I understand that doesn't solve our immediate problem.

Batshuayi has shown little improvement from when I first saw him play. For me, he is not the solution to our current shortfall now or in the future. Buying him may prevent us buying a better player a little further down the line as we clearly don't have a bottomless pit of money.

Jay Wood

43 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:17:43
"I don't know anything about Valencia and their situation."

Exactly again, Grant.

But their manager does know everything about Valencia, their players and their situation...and he isn't picking yer man, even though they have scored just 16 goals in 18 games, and he is happy to send him back to Chelsea, who in turn are happy to offload him for as little as £14m in today's hyper-inflated market.

Quite a few clues there, Grant, doncha think..?

Batshauyi would be a roll of the dice, a hopeful punt. We need better than that.

John Keating
44 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:35:40
To all intents an purpose, our season is more or less over.

We will probably finish mid-table and hope that Silva can spend the rest of the season stabilising the team and getting more of his ideas over to the squad and supporters.

Why waste money on a player who has not achieved anything special? Let's keep offloading as much deadwood as we can as soon as we can and spend whatever money we have at the beginning of the summer to get, hopefully, a proven goalscorer.

Craig Walker
45 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:36:45
Calvert-Lewin is 21 years old — he'll be 22 in March. I don't think he will ever be good enough for Everton. I like the lad but don't think we can continue to use him as our main striker hoping he fulfils his potential.

At the same age, how many goals had Rooney or Owen scored in the Premier League? How many truly great performances has he produced in an Everton shirt?

The sitter towards the end of the Goodison derby last season that he missed summed him up for me. A natural goalscorer would have side-footed it in and we'd have got that elusive win against the RS. He tried to break the back of the net and sent it high into the Gwladys Street.

Steve Ferns
46 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:50:36
Maybe so Craig, but to answer Chris Gould's point, Marcel Brands thinks a lot of Dominic Calvert-Lewin. He said he won't be signing a player who would take games away from Dominic. He also mentioned Lookman and Richarlison. He wants to develop those as a front three.

It seemed he was talking about exactly the kind of player Batshuayi is. And I don't believe it's the club sniffing around at all. This is just: Everton need a striker, and Batshuayi needs a club, and an agent doing his job and pushing it in the papers.

I am certain Calvert-Lewin will come good. He's only 21 and who cares how many sub appearances he made as a teenager. They shouldn't deflate his stats and be used as something to beat him with.

Sam Hoare
47 Posted 11/01/2019 at 12:54:39
Jay, there may be a multiplicity of reasons he hasn't had time at Valencia. It's hard for loan players to always find their feet at new clubs. I'm not sure a bad 6 months at Valencia is reason to write him off.

As I said earlier, the last time he was a permanent player at a club that played him he scored around one goal every two games. If he could do that for us (and I'm not saying he definitely would) then £14m would be a bargain.

Andy Meighan
48 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:01:38
Steve @30,

"Calvert-Lewin is showing signs of scoring"???

What exactly does that mean??? He's either scoring or he's not... End of!

Derek Taylor
49 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:02:14
A question that's not been posed lately is whether or not a conventional striker would fit into Silva's line-up and pattern of play.

I seem to remember him saying that he looked for goals from all his players, not specifically 'a striker' — athough that was probably voiced when he realised he hadn't got one!

It would be a pity to blow a fortune on yet another 'hopeful' who failed because the service to him was abysmal. We seem to have had a lot of that genre in lately.

Brian Williams
50 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:07:02
Why don't we get Zouma permanently and then loan Batshuayi?

This would circumvent the loan rules and mean the risk on Batshuayi is a low one.

Jay Wood

51 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:11:36
Sam, there could indeed be a 'multiplicity of reasons he hasn't had time at Valencia'. Whilst the first clause of your sentence may be true, the second clause isn't accurate.

What is indisputable is a goal-scorer, which is what Batshuayi primarily is, who is not injured, who is available to play, and who is playing (featured in 15 out of 18 La Liga games, 3 out of 3 Copa Del Rey games, 5 out of 6 Champions League games, making 23 appearances out of a possible 27 games), is not trusted by the manager to start (completed just 4 full games this season) even though the team clearly needs a goal scorer. He has scored 3.

Indeed, the manager wants to end the loan early and, if the rumours are true, Chelsea are willing to offload for as little as £14m which is nothing in today's market.

I repeat, he represents a punt, a roll of the dice. We need better. Use what we have in-house until we can genuinely upgrade to a proven, class striker.

Sam Hoare
52 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:25:26
Jay, I don't dispute that he's a roll of the dice. So is every signing to an extent but I take your point. I'm just not as confident that we will find and land a ‘proven, class striker' they are rare and popular commodities. Do you have any suggestions?

I think our best chance of such a striker is developing one who's got the potential (Lukaku style) or taking a punt on a once-rated player who's lost their way (Pienaar style).

I'm not wed to the idea of Batshuyai but I think, as rolls of the dice go, he could be an intriguing one.

Marcus Taylor
53 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:31:48
Jay #49

Define "proven, class striker" and list 5 that we could realistically sign (given that we are a mid-table team, not in Europe and unlikely to qualify for Europe next season).

Kristian Boyce
54 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:32:13
Valencia also have Spanish international Rodrigo and Kevin Gameiro on their books. Maybe a reason why he hasn't featured as much as you would have expected.

Batshuayi has been on our radar with us for years. We were heavily linked to him before he joined Chelsea. If we've been quoted £14M, then that would be a bargain.

Jay Wood

55 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:37:10
Sam, I agree with you when you say every signing – manager or player! – is a roll of the dice. Always said the same myself. But you can tip the odds in your favour by doing due diligence

I also agree, as things currently stand, Everton cannot compete at the top end of the striker market and so, by default, have to (a degree...) take something of a punt on under-the-radar younger players with potential.

Batshuayi doesn't fall into that category for me. He is 25, not under the radar (he is at a high-profile club in Chelsea and played for Belgium at the World Cup), but still cannot consistently hold down a starting place wherever he goes and, at the age he is, cannot continue to be spoken of in terms of 'potential'.

Unless Brands completely backtracks on what he said just last week, Batshuayi strikes me as a complete non-starter as far as Everton is concerned.

And no, Sam (and Marcus...), I have no suggestions for possible striker targets within our budget. I'm not one to scour YouTube videos and post wish lists of players Everton should sign, as some supporters like to do. I'll leave that to the paid professionals at the club.

Shaun McGough
56 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:47:10
I would rather give them the money for Zouma now (our best centre-half) and have a look at this guy on loan and decide then.
Sam Hoare
57 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:50:22
Jay, I definitely am one to scour YouTube and various other player sources. I don't see a lot of proven strikers that would come to us. I quite like the idea of a punt on Martinez in the MLS or Pepe from Lille but the former is very untried and the latter very expensive.

I agree, Batshuyai cannot trade on potential anymore but he may qualify as a decent player who's lost his way. He's still presumably got his best years ahead of him.

I liked what Brands said about younger players and like you I suspect the move won't happen. Unless we sell Niasse or/and Tosun. In which case Brands suggested we'd consider a replacement. I think, in January, Batshuyai is about the best option on that road.

Marcus Taylor
58 Posted 11/01/2019 at 13:56:32
Jay #53

You shouldn't need to scour YouTube to know the names of 'proven class' strikers. The point is, no 'proven class' striker would sign for Everton at this moment in time.

Like it or not, we're shopping at the level below that, where signings - even if thoroughly scouted - represent a risk. Some work: Richarlison and Lukaku... and others don't: Tosun and Niasse. Simple as that.

Danny Halsall
59 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:01:52
I think the only way that I would be happy with this deal was if we somehow sorted a permanent deal for Zouma and then signed Batshuayi on loan. For me, he isn't the answer and agree that he would be an expensive acquisition due to his probable wage demands with no guarantee that he would be starting every week.

In my opinion, we are not going to be relegated and we aren't going to break the top 6. We will finish 7th or 8th with the squad we have right now. Seems to make sense to me to leave the manager with the squad he has now for the remainder of the season, then go for our primary targets in the summer.

Sam Hoare
60 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:09:48
I'm not sure Chelsea want to sell Zouma. And even less sure he wants to make the move permanently. I think he figures (rightly or wrongly) he'll have a shot at Chelsea now Cahill is done and David Luiz is getting on.
Grant Rorrison
61 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:14:36
Jay 42. If Valencia were top of the league, your argument would carry a lot more weight. The guy in charge of them clearly doesn't 'know everything' about them. He doesn't know how to a get result with them for a start. ;)

As for Chelsea. They have been only too happy to sell Salah, Lukaku, De Bruyne, Sturridge, etc. over the years. I wouldn't back their judgement too highly.

Kase Chow
62 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:15:45
Batshuyai would be a revelation at our club and could get 15+ goals a season at Everton. Finally we'd have a replacement for Lukaku (clearly not as good/prolific but who is?) and someone who's pacy, direct and loves scoring goals.

I never get the impression with Calvert-Lewin that he has that rabid hunger, that screaming desire to score goals. We just need a goalscorer so badly and Batshuyai has the potential and ability.

The same people saying no to this aren't suggesting alternative names and would probably say No to the likes of say Rondon or Mitrovic too. Well, I don't think the latter 2 players are good enough for where we want to be either but they're better than what we currently have.

We need a goalscorer, an attacking presence, someone that can stretch teams and we can play the ball in behind so we can move up as a team.

I honestly don't think the people saying ‘No' to this deal actually understand football and what we so desperately need.

Fran Mitchell
63 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:34:38
I can't help but think those who have always compared him to Lukaku do so on the basis that he is black and Belgian, which is just racist stereotyping really. Kind of like saying Harry Kane is like Glenn Murray or Kevin Davies.

Personally, I've never seen anything in Batshuayi to suggest he's anyway near what we want or need as a striker. In France he was good, but nothing special at all.

At Chelsea, and since, he has not been prolific, has suffered an injury that could well have impacted on his pace. He is an average striker, and those writing off the 21-year-old Calvert-Lewin as 'crap' and hailing 25-year-old Batshuayi as a coup need to have their heads checked.

One that did spark my interest today was the statement that Malcolm is unsettled at Barça (another promising young player signing for the Massive club way to early in their career). Maybe a loan deal, with a view to a permanent deal in the Summer.

Malcolm on the left, Richarilson in the Middle, Lookman on the right. Given time, could become formidable.

Jay Wood

64 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:42:18
Marcus, read my post you quoted. I agree with you and Sam on the market we're realistically competing in.

My point is that, given Batshuyai's age and profile, he is not a serious upgrade to what we have at the club already and fits the description that Brands made just last week about the January transfer window and not wishing to block the progress of young players already on our books, so why bother?

This is very much Brands's job in a nutshell: uncover those under the radar players not yet fetching eye-watering transfer fees. Batshuyai is not in that category, IMO.

Grant @ 59. Who's arguing? The two replies I made to you clearly agreed with your opening statements. However, for some reason, I think I'll lean towards the decision-making of the more informed and qualified Valencia manager, who works with the players every day, on the worth of Batshuyai to his side, rather than an Everton supporter on an Everton forum who admits he knows nothing about Valencia or their situation. Soz!

Chris Gould
65 Posted 11/01/2019 at 14:55:37
Steve Ferns #45, I hope you're right regarding Calvert-Lewin, but I have my concerns. It's really hard to put a finger on what's missing from the lad as he appears to have it all.

Something prevents me from getting excited about him. I believe he deserves a run and our support, but he lacks dynamism.

Everyone knows that he is quick, but it isn't obvious because he doesn't have lightning acceleration. He has a good top speed but isn't particularly quick over the vital 10-15 yards. If you're a striker and you aren't explosive or dynamic, then you need to be a natural finisher, or at least make predatory runs.

I don't see these qualities in Calvert-Lewin, but I would rather we gave him the chance to develop and prove me wrong, than bring in another mediocre player on huge wages.

Marcus Taylor
66 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:09:39
Jay #63

Fair enough! I'm not 100% sold on Batshuayi either, to be honest, but he is better than Niasse, Tosun and Calvert-Lewin. He's 25 and has scored 108 goals in 288 games in 5 countries – plus 12 in 22 at International level. Worth a punt (at the right price) in my opinion.

I don't see whose progress he would block. You need 3 strikers, minimum. I can't see Niasse or Tosun being here next season, so there should still be opportunities for the likes of Calvert-Lewin – even if we bring in Batshuayi (or someone else). If the younger players are good enough, they'll get their chance.

Jay Harris
67 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:19:23
There is no question we need to get Sandro, Tosun and NIasse off the books asap; if we can swing part of that in January, we need some additional cover.

We are not going to do anything this season so we might as well give Calvert-Lewin a bit of a run to see if he can add goals to his repertoire at this level.

However we all know the need for a "prolific" goalscorer but it just seems Moshiri wants to grow his own rather than pay £120M plus £10M a year in wages.

If we are not going to bring in a top striker, I would sooner we spent the time scouting up and coming talent that would be able to do it at premiership level.

The only other alternative would be to buy Zouma (if possible) and take Batshuiyi on loan till the end of the season.

Kunal Desai
68 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:36:49
Nope, sorry, not for me. It has to be going very big, not strikers who are emerging or have the potential. It has to be the real deal and that means paying potentially £60, £70 maybe £80 million plus on someone proven at both club and international level.

The players we or Brands need to convince to come to Everton (somehow he sells it) are the likes of Icardi, Immobile and Werner. It's going to cost a fortune but that will be our best bet, our only bet. It also shows other players, perhaps thinking of joining, that the ambition is there.

Soren Moyer
69 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:53:30
A player nobody wants in their team! Please no!
John Hammond
70 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:58:10
Kunal, all excellent players and I'd love to see them at Everton but there are many clubs ahead of us that can offer so much more no matter how much money we throw at them.

Mid-table and 11 points off a Europa League spot. I can't see us finishing too many places higher unless there's some kind of major improvement from the team. That's difficult to sell.

It's going to be a couple of years (hopefully) until we can even think about those players and then you have to factor in the stadium putting a dent into the finances.

Andrew Ellams
71 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:58:58
Kunal, which £80 million 'real deal' striker do you think is going to be knocking on Everton's door right now? Lukaku was probably the best striker of a global generation that was prepared to play for Everton and he got slagged off every week on these pages.
Jack Convery
72 Posted 11/01/2019 at 15:59:04
He's not made the step up he should have made. As we cannot loan him I wouldn't spend the money on him. Keep the dosh and add a few bob and go and test Leicester over Vardy.

He's just what we need. A leader a scorer, a winner and most of all he hates to lose. Without Vardy, Leicester would not be 7th – that's the difference he makes.

Brian Patrick
73 Posted 11/01/2019 at 16:08:02
Fran @62 — just because someone infers a similarity between two black Belgians does not mean they are ‘racist'. Its called a ‘non sequitur' in latin. They probably mean they are both strikers and of a similar style.

It's the kind of illogical liberal nonsense so prevalent in Britain. The truth is most people like you are just echoing these phrases they heard on Sky or in The Guardian. Don't bring this crap into football forums — it's meaningless.

Brian Williams
74 Posted 11/01/2019 at 16:13:59
Brian #72.

Couldn't agree more. Just couldn't be bothered responding to his stupid comment. Well said mate.

Fran Mitchell
75 Posted 11/01/2019 at 16:30:54
Really? What is similar in Lukaku's and Batshuayi's game? Very little from what i've seen.

And it is very common with black players in general, Lukaku was compared with Drogba, despite the vastly different playing styles. Why? Nobody has ever compared Harry Kane to Sheringham, Berbatov or any other great Spurs striker, because they are vastly different.

When Lukaku was off form, it would be common to hear people compare him to Heskey. Again, completely different players with one common demoninator.

So... 'illogical liberal nonsense' — you sound like the Bolsonaro supporters here in Brazil .

Brian Williams
76 Posted 11/01/2019 at 16:35:39
Marco has reiterated again, today, that we'll need to shift someone out before we get anyone in, so we'll have to hope one of either Niasse or Tosun leave.

McCarthy is going nowhere either, he says, not on loan anyway.

Frank Crewe
77 Posted 11/01/2019 at 17:14:34
Fran @74. That's a very good point. Nobody would ever compare a current black player to a retired white one. Lukaku will never be the next Alan Shearer but he could be the next Andy Cole. Unconscious racism. We don't even know we're doing it and indignantly deny it when it's pointed out.

But getting back to the player in question. I don't know if Batshuayi is the player we need but we definitely need someone. Calvert-Lewin and Tosun are decent enough players as cover but they both lack any real dynamism which is what a top striker needs.

ps: You live in Brazil? You have my sympathy on the result of the recent election. Like Trump and Brexit, it will all end in tears.

Michael Connelly
78 Posted 11/01/2019 at 17:20:09
Calvert-Lewin is a good finisher with his head, but a poor finisher with his feet with a powder puff shot. He may develop over time but he's not the answer at the moment.

Batshuayi may not be the answer, but Thierry Henry seems to like him; I'd imagine he's not the worst judge.

Brian Williams
79 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:06:52
Lukaku could be the next Andy Cole? Andy Cole, the ex striker who is 4" shorter than Lukaku and 16kgs lighter?

Cole a tricky clinical finisher; Lukaku a big strong speed merchant.

Yeh... that makes sense!

John Daley
80 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:10:19
He certainly didn't look out of place when he started and scored twice for Belgium against Iceland a couple of months ago. In fact, he looked quite impressive, especially when linking up with Hazard. However, link-up play can normally be pinpointed as one of his weaknesses with his touch and control often letting him down and leaving him flailing about, all red-faced and gozzy-eyed like Luca Brasi last time he propped up the bar.

Strange thing is, though, whenever he has been given a decent run of games, this particular weakness has seemed to become less and less debilitating and his goal tally has somehow grown. Almost as if it is actually possible for someone to play themselves into better form by getting their arse off the bench and onto the pitch on a regular basis. That can't be right though.

Everton fans should know better than most that such trivialities as match fitness, needing time to settle in, getting used to a new style, system and teammates, amount to nothing more than a load of old guff the 'proper gash' desperately grasp at in order to excuse the fact they're currently performing like a punctured colostomy bag.

I mean, look at Valencia... they don't mess about. There were suggestions they were already exploring the possibility of ending Batshuayi's loan early back in October. Give the guy a whole month gratis to get to grips with a new league, new manager and new teammates and then, if he's not hit the ground running, publicly question his suitability and write the fucker off for good. Clearly that Marcelino guy must know his shit and couldn't possibly possess the man-management skills and smacked arse mug of Gail fucking Platt.

Whilst linking play and consistently holding up the ball may never be Batshuayi's strength, he can do it to a passable degree and his normally intelligent movement, anticipation and positioning suggest he should be much more likely to get on the end of things than our current crop of forwards.

Throughout his career, a large proportion of his goals have been what could be classed as 'poachers' goals. The right man, arriving in the right place, at the right time, like a reverse John McClane. If he's applying the finishing touch often enough, any failings outside the box will be forgiven.

True, it didn't seem to work that way for Lukaku, but the ensuing struggle to find a semi-adequate replacement should ensure the next guy capable of banging them in consistently is cut a bit more slack when it comes to his other shortcomings.

No guarantee Batshuayi would be that guy but, for a squad sorely shorn of goal-scoring instinct, in a market suffering a severe shortage of attainable finished-article assassins, £14M, or half a Cenk 'clunks like Ed-209 at the top of the stairs' Tosun, doesn't seem such an unpalatable punt to me.

David Israel
81 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:13:38
Unfortunately, we cannot go on waiting indefinitely for Calvert-Lewin to 'develop', as it were. At his age, Joe Royle, to name just one great striker of our past, had already romped through the game, long ago.

Batshuayi's record cannot honestly be assessed without considering his serious injuries and the fact that he has spent too much time on the bench, as well as the constant moves in his career, which only work for a journeyman player, which he clearly isn't.

The price being mentioned is very reasonable and we should go for it. I'm sure there'll be takers in the Tosun/Niasse market.

Brian Patrick
82 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:20:17
Frank, the op compared 2 footballers, they happen to be black. You cannot then draw the conclusion the poster was ‘racist'. That's a logical fallacy. He ‘may' have thought that but we don't know. Ipso facto, it is wrong.

Regarding ‘unconscious racism' you are now making some Freudian speculative accusation for the entire population. Maybe we have a ‘racist gene', ‘anti feminist gene' etc.

Your arguments are absurd. If you have ever read any anthropology you would never have even mentioned this ‘race' obsession. John Wilson will probably be along to explain your idiocy soon...

David Israel
83 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:25:44
Frank @76, I think we should stick to football around here. There's plenty of places on the web where people can vent their political frustrations.
Pete Hughes
84 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:32:48
Fran @76, grow up! What a stupid remark.
Phil (Kelsall) Roberts
85 Posted 11/01/2019 at 18:52:34
Facts on Calvert-Lewin:

Premier League Goals this season = 3
Minutes on the pitch = 746

746/3 = 248. One goal almost every 3 games.

That is about the same rate as 9 players over the last 35 years who have scored more than 10 goals for us.

Sharp, Heath, Rooney, Saha, Campbell, Kanchelskis, Jelavic, Wayne Clark, Mo Johnston.

I think we all agree that any of the first 6 would be acceptable. But Calvert-Lewin's return is not? Yeah, Okay, Right.

David Israel
86 Posted 11/01/2019 at 19:01:04
Sobering numbers, indeed, Phil, even though not all those you mention were out-and-out strikers.
Don Alexander
87 Posted 11/01/2019 at 19:05:30
From my admittedly limited observation of Batshuayi vs Lukaku I think most centre-backs would most fear a combination of the two. The physical presence of Lukaku, allied to the far more mobile Batshuayi of lesser physical stature.

Lukaku gives centre-backs way too easy a time and always has done as far as I'm concerned but Bats, for all his mobility and roving, has neither the scoring touch nor the ability to dominate the oppo's penalty area.

Hey ho, perhaps if we sign him Batshuayi may just develop along the lines of Aubamayeng, who knows? And remember, Aubamayeng has taken a decade to get to where he is now, staring aged 30 square in the face and therefore losing sell-on value by the month, unlike Batshuayi if he was to find success with us.

Darren Hind
88 Posted 11/01/2019 at 19:29:14
Ha! "all red-faced and gozzy-eyed like Luca Brasi last time he propped up the bar".

I didn't need to check back to see who penned that. Always. always, always, good to see you post, son.

Fran Mitchell
89 Posted 11/01/2019 at 19:52:24
I would still prefer to go for Richarlison or Calvert-Lewin in the middle, unless a really top class striker is found. Calvert-Lewin has potential, and I think Richarlison did really well when played there (which was actually during our best spell of form this year).

With more time he could develop further, and adding someone like Malcolm, or Pavón.

The need for a big target-man type centre forward is not what we need, hence the struggles of Tosun. We need dynamism, skill to unlock tight defenses that park the bus, and quick players to hurt teams on the counter.

An attack of Pavón, Malcolm, Richarilson, and Lookman or Calvert-Lewin would have that pace and skill, as well as real potential to grow and improve together.

Keep Bernard as competition for Sigurdsson.

Tony Everan
90 Posted 11/01/2019 at 20:19:35
What concerns me is that it was rumoured a couple of years ago after Lukaku went that we were sniffing him. The lad didn't fancy it if I remember right.

When the going gets tough will he have the balls and the heart to fight for EFC like his life is on the line? Or will he cry into the seat-well of his Range Rover every day, wailing about how we won't let him go somewhere warm on a free transfer?

£14M sounds like a fair gamble; if we sell Niasse and Tosun, it is worth pursuing as he has talent and could improve for stability.

Gavin Johnson
91 Posted 11/01/2019 at 20:51:49
There's a risk in every signing. Of course there's players I'd prefer us to sign over Michy Batshuayi. Personally, I'd like us to sign Andrea Belotti – a classic No 9 who's scores and has a good assists record but I'd take the Chelsea lad over Niasse or Tosun.

His stock seems to have gone down after a recent injury and short spell in Spain (hence the mooted £14M fee) The effects of the injury would be my only concern in pushing this deal through because up to that point he did the business in Germany and had a decent record in Belgium and France. I seem to remember him doing okay whenever he was given a chance at Chelsea.

There could be a myriad of reasons why it hasn't worked out in Spain, but one reason might style of play. Look at Mark Hughes one of Man Utd's greatest strikers. An absolute disaster playing under Venables in La Liga. Wasn't much better at Bayern. Ian Rush, absolute garbage in Italy.

All I'll say is that, while Michy Batshuayi isn't in the class of a Harry Kane or a Lukaku, but he's a definite upgrade on what we have. Fingers crossed we can offload Niasse or Tosun.

James Marshall
92 Posted 11/01/2019 at 21:34:50
I don't rate him; he won't score us many goals in my view. However, we're in a tricky position – name me one top striker that's itching to play for middle-of-the-table Everton?

The queue isn't exactly round the block these days, is it???

Laurie Hartley
93 Posted 11/01/2019 at 22:23:17
John Daley # 79 – good to see you back.

Tony # 15 – is this the type of “centre-forward” you mean?

Number 9

Paul Birmingham
94 Posted 11/01/2019 at 23:05:25
We are stuck in a rut and, with no forward presence, we won't score enough goals, as results prove.

This is a massive requirement for this team but my gut is Brands will see out the season, off-load as best as he can, and go for a striker who's been consistent and playing.

It seems 5 minutes since he was scoring wonder goals every other week in Bundesliga, but it's now a long time. The lad has class, but has become a journeyman already.

Economics etc are key to every deal, if... we offloaded some of players like Niasse, Tosun, Walcott, it may be an equal trade, but I sense Brands will stick to his guns and in preseason we get a real striker. (Hope eternal, but that will be some challenge!)

By God, we need two at least to become a proper team.

Phil Smith
95 Posted 11/01/2019 at 23:40:02
This guy seems to divide opinion but I believe he would be a great addition to our squad. He's a goalscorer. Yes, he misses a lot of chances but he's always there to get them. Currently, we don't have anyone like that getting a game. Yes for me.
Brian Wilkinson
96 Posted 12/01/2019 at 00:45:32
I hear everyone saying wait til Summer for a top-class striker.

In the meantime we could end up letting Niasse and Tosun leave in the January window.

For £14 Million, I would certainly take a punt on the guy. £14 Million is small change these Days, especially for a striker, low risk with a possible master-stroke if it comes off.

Rather pay that than £30-odd Million for someone who might not settle like Tosun, gives us 5 months to see if he can do the business, if not then go and try and land a top class striker for around £40 million.

Ideal world we could sign Zouma then loan Batshuayi but have a feeling Zouma will want to have another go at Chelsea, with the likes of Cahill and David Luiz not getting any younger.

Rob Dolby
97 Posted 12/01/2019 at 01:25:39
I don't get why we would go anywhere near this guy. His hold-up play is poor, his goal scoring record is poor what is he going to add to the team?

Just because its £14M doesn't mean jack.

Most clubs in the Premier League have better strikers than him so why should we buy him. In fact, Niasse is better than him.

Gavin Johnson
98 Posted 12/01/2019 at 01:52:50
Looks like Batshuayi is going to Monaco anyway. Not good enough for a mid-table Premier League side like Everton... my arse! lol.
Fran Mitchell
99 Posted 12/01/2019 at 02:39:04
Gavin, so signing for a team battling relegation in France proves he would be the man to push us further?

Is he good enough for a mid-table team? Well, if the aim is to consolidate mid-table (the likes of Brighton, Wolves, among others) then yes. But the point is we want more than that, we want to be pushing the top-6, and many on here, me included, think he isn't the man to do that

We've wasted so much money on players like Tosun, Walcott and Co, cause they 'are better than what we have'

Time for us to be more frugal, and more selective with our purchases.

Fran Mitchell
100 Posted 12/01/2019 at 02:46:04
But players who have signed for Monaco recently, Cesc Fabregas for about £8 million.

31, but the lad is class. He could have come in and had that 'Barry' impact on the team, a leader whose won it all, who could have shown how it is done.

Cesc and Gomes with Gueye behind and 3 dynamic forwards, sexy stuff.

Not to be, probably massive wages and all... but our team is very young and inexperienced and a top quality, experienced player, like Barry was, would be invaluable.

Mike Gaynes
101 Posted 12/01/2019 at 03:52:37
Jay #36, possible point, but Valencia's manager is Marcelino. A tactical knothead (watch them play, it's ugly) who hasn't won squat as a manager except for one season at Villarreal. I wouldn't take his word for it.

The fact is that for his entire top league career, Batshuayi scores a goal every 151 minutes on the pitch. That's actually better than Lukaku (160).

At this price – if it really is the price – he is absolutely worth a punt.

Gavin Johnson
102 Posted 12/01/2019 at 03:58:15
Fran – I differ from your opinion because I've long rated Michy Batshuayi, and because of that I don't think a 25-year-old players career should be defined on half a season in an unfamiliar league.

I gave examples of Mark Hughes and Rush in another post. Some players don't fit some leagues. I think Batshuayi has had a decent career prior to his loan to Spain. He did very well in Belgium and France. Good enough for Chelsea to pay over £30M.

I only remember him getting a run at Chelsea in the latter stage of his season there and he scored a few. He never was going to just walk into that side but, when he did, he did well IMO. He scored 7 in 10 in Germany. For me he's better than what we've got.

There's strikers I'd prefer us to buy, but they're not realistic, especially in Jan but we need to offload Niasse or Tosun and bring someone in. I don't know about wages, but the fee would be roughly the same as what we'd get for either of our deadwood.

André Gomes was shite at Barca. It's a good job we didn't apply that logic there – writing him off after a bad season. As for Monaco. Yeah, they're shite this season but they won the French title recently. Probably a more attractive club than one that hasn't won zilch in over 20 years.

Fran Mitchell
103 Posted 12/01/2019 at 05:09:08
Fair enough, but I don't personally see him as a player to lift us to our aspirations. And I think all players signed from here on in should be with that in mind: 'Will this player take us to the next level?' Nothing is ever guaranteed, of course.

From what I have seen of Batshuayi, he's decent. Yes, better than Tosun. Better than Niasse. Probably better than Calvert-Lewin at this moment in time. But we need to be aiming for players that will make us a top-6 team in the long run.

For that reason, I prefer the idea or more dynamic forwards. Batshuayi has a neat skillset from what I've seen, but poor finishing will always limit him. And he isn't the type who will interchange positions in a dynamic front three.

I like the idea of players (of similar age) like Luan and Dudu from the Brazilian league. I feel they could be left-field options, ready for the move to Europe. Or Pavón or Benedetto from Boca Juniors. Or Abraham from Chelsea. All these I feel would be better suited. Maybe they wouldn't adapt, maybe, but I feel there is a bigger chance of them having potential to take us to the nest level than someone like Batshuayi.

Gaute Lie
104 Posted 12/01/2019 at 05:43:36
If less than £15 mill, I would get him. £7.8 mill for Niasse, and McCarthy should get £8 mill. So there we are.

I like this guy but, as said by others, he's like Lukaku and doesn't bother with too much defensively.

Mike Gaynes
105 Posted 12/01/2019 at 06:10:59
Fran #102, the only way to get to the "next level" is to improve. If Batshuayi can score goals that Tosun, Calvert-Lewin or Niasse cannot, he improves us. Every step brings us closer to Top 6. One step at a time.

I truly cannot imagine how you see untried South American players taking us to the next level you mention. Benedetto is a pure goalscorer, but he's 28 and has had knee issues, and Brands & Silva are clearly focused on building with younger players. I have chairs bigger than Pavon, can't imagine him as a Premier League striker. Luan I haven't seen, but he is a once-in-five-games striker in a weak defensive league. And the only Dudu I ever heard of was a pint-sized right back – is he the one you mean? We have two of those already.

Abraham would be terrific, but no way Brands will spend £50 million.

Derek Thomas
106 Posted 12/01/2019 at 07:22:07
At 25 he's a gamble, but at £14M he's an affordable gamble. Niasse, Tosun and Sandro are all failed gambles.

The hard part won't be making the 25-year-old / £14M gamble — it will be getting rid of the other three failures and their wages.

Colin Glassar
107 Posted 12/01/2019 at 07:45:49
I totally agree, Derek. The deadwood is an incredible weight around our shoulders. Throw Bolasie, McCarthy and a few others in there and we should be able to afford Batsuyahi, Doucoure and Cedric — and that would us be sorted until the summer.
Darren Hind
108 Posted 12/01/2019 at 07:53:11
Some people are missing the woods for the trees. "Der Bomber" would not get into double figures in this Everton team.

It's easy to point the finger at the strikers and say they don't score, but it's not as if Tosun, Calvert-Lewin, or Richarlison have missed a bagfull of sitters.

Players likes Salah and Aguero may score goals our guys could only dream about, but they miss 2-3 times as many chances too.

When Lukaku was here, every thing we did, we did with the intention of supplying him ammunition, almost to the expense of everyone else.

We play differently now. The strikers are expected to occupy the opponents and midfield players are encouraged to get into the box. They're the ones missing the chances.

Things may be different if we had a natural born striker (not this fella) but Silva is definitely not a Get-it-to-the-big-man type of coach so there's no point in spending £20-30M on a striker if you are not going to provide him with the service needed to score goals.

We need to either change our style and play with "strikers" rather than line leaders... or make the profligate cavalry, charging from the midfield or the wings, bring their shooting boots.

Rob Dolby
109 Posted 12/01/2019 at 09:36:04
Yep, I agree, Darren. We do score goals maybe not as many as we would all like. Besides Sigurdsson, we don't really have another goal threat from midfield. We also concede too many and look vulnerable from set-pieces and counter-attacks.

Not sure signing this guy would improve any of the above.

Andrew Yates
110 Posted 12/01/2019 at 10:02:29
I had a weird dream that we signed a 36-year-old Eric Cantona and he banged in 6 goals in 5 matches.

I'd say we don't bother with some 25-year-old Belgian who may or may not score (see Christian Benteke) and look at a Glenn Murray, Charlie Austin, Vardy-esque striker for now... opportunists who could spend half a season banging them in.

All I want is a passion fuelled, tough 'put yer head in there' type striker who doesn't give a shit other than feeding his desire to score. Michey is about as far from that as a polar bear stuck in a duck pond.

Chris Gould
111 Posted 12/01/2019 at 10:23:03
Darren, you're absolutely right. I have been saying the same thing. I can't think of many chances missed by our strikers. We just don't do well enough in the final third. The final pass or cross is not hitting the target. I think Richarlison is a decent finisher and also works extremely hard. I think he could do the job if we could sort out the supply lines.

Apparently we cross the ball more than any other club in the league, but clearly the crosses are not good enough. It's easy to blame the strikers and say they're not making the right runs, but they are making the runs that they're asked to make. They don't just go out and run around cluelessly. They run drills in training over and over again.

The wingers and midfielders have been the problem for me. We don't create enough clear chances for any of our strikers, and we aren't clinical with chances created for the likes of Walcott, Bernard etc. Gomes hasn't looked like scoring, and Sigurdsson is not creating enough chances for others. It's a little worrying that he isn't even on dead-ball duty any more. That was his real strength. I like Sigurdsson as he works very hard and scores goals, but he needs to create an awful lot more as our No 10.

From open play, the much maligned, Barkley, is credited with creating 56 chances from open play in his final 36 games for us. Sigurdsson has created just 37 chances in 48 games. That's a huge drop in creativity from our playmaker. I like him, but he may be part of the problem.

Sadly, Coleman is also part of the problem. Compare Digne's creativity and productivity to Coleman's and they don't come close. Walcott is another that isn't creating chances for others, as well as not being clinical enough with his own chances.

Batshuyai isn't going to help us. He isn't worth a punt simply because he may be available on the cheap. His wages will be huge and once he's here on a 5-year deal we will be stuck with him. Brands won't sanction it. He doesn't fit the criteria.

Martin Nicholls
112 Posted 12/01/2019 at 10:51:20
Whether or not Batshuayi would be a good fit, there is no way Chelsea will sell him for £14million. That is not their modus operandi. They "harvest" huge numbers of players, loan them out then sell them at a profit, not a massive loss.

I seem to remember that when we were looking to sign Lukaku on a permanent deal, the widely speculated fee was £18 million – we ended up paying £10 million more than that. I would be astonished if they sold this guy for under £20 or 25 million, particularly given the state of the market.

Karen Mason
113 Posted 12/01/2019 at 13:26:33
Kase at 61. Rather an arrogant statement to make – that those of us who don't rate Batshuayi don't know anything about football?? I could be as arrogant as you and reverse that. Have you actually watched him play??

The fact is that none of the clubs he has been involved with want to keep or sign him.

The fact that Chelsea are offering him for £14 mill and there is no clammer from any Premier League clubs to 'snap him up' would indicate to me that perhaps those of us who have said 'no' to Batshuayi are in good company. Ie those who work in football.

I would be happy to stand toe to toe with you to debate any aspect of football, as believe me – I know plenty. As do many of the other posters who said 'no' to Batshuayi.

Karen Mason
114 Posted 12/01/2019 at 13:31:15
Kase at 61.

By the way, the article was about Batshuayi... not which strikers we would like to bring to our club.

Gavin Johnson
115 Posted 12/01/2019 at 14:58:09
Martin #110 Totally agree. I'm not sure where the £14M fee has come from but doesn't sound realistic just because the guy's had half a bad season in Spain. Especially in today's market.

My only concern is that this injury has been a bad one because £14M for Michy Batshuayi seems too good to be true, and probably isn't the money Chelsea would be looking for.

If the media was correct saying we wanted him when Koeman was manager and he didn't think were good enough and he went to Germany instead. A lot more people on TW wanted him to come before he went to Germany, that I do recall.

Mike Gaynes
116 Posted 12/01/2019 at 15:33:00
Darren #106 and Chris #109, spot on. The lack of service is a far larger problem than the lack of striker finishing. But it would help to have a striker who finishes more of the few chances we do get (Tosun point blank, Bernard's pass untouched).

Andrew #108, Austin and Murray wouldn't be able to do all the other things Silva demands from a striker, like pressuring defenders. Vardy isn't an opportunist, however – he's a self-creator, a Lone Ranger running on to through balls. Silva would have to change his system to accommodate any of them.

Christy Ring
117 Posted 12/01/2019 at 16:31:57
What about Ighalo who wants to come back to the Premier League?
Brian Wilkinson
118 Posted 12/01/2019 at 21:16:17
I must be watching a different team if people are saying we are not missing many chances. Bernard and Walcott alone have missed a good 5 easy chances, throw in Tosun, Niasse and god knows how many headers in the box by our central defenders unmarked.

Yes, not all strikers, but a top-class centre forward would have been in double figures, just on those chances missed alone.

I would certainly give a Michy Batshuayi a go at that price. The problem is, I cannot see anyone stumping up the cash for Tosun and Niasse... well, certainly not at the price we are asking.

Andrew Yates
119 Posted 12/01/2019 at 21:24:49
Appreciate that, Mike, and yes, I see the problem with those I've named, I'm just running out of ideas!?!

Do we need a good old-fashioned striker? A lean skillful whippet? An injury-prone cast-off? A lower-league chancer? A selfish arsehole who doesn't work for the team!!?? Arrghh! It used to be so much simpler!!

Mike Gaynes
120 Posted 12/01/2019 at 22:43:36
Andrew, I'd take a heffalump if he could score a goal a week.
Jamie Crowley
121 Posted 12/01/2019 at 22:45:48
I’d pay seriously good money to see a heffalump up top.
Mike Powell
122 Posted 13/01/2019 at 11:25:12
I think Calvert-Lewin is a poor player but would still have him instead of Batshuayi... I don't know what anyone sees in these two players
Chris James
123 Posted 13/01/2019 at 16:03:58
Surely worth a loan for half season at least – to see if he fits?
Stephen Davies
124 Posted 13/01/2019 at 16:11:28
Chris #125,

We cannot loan him, he's a Chelsea player as is Zouma.

Chris Burns
125 Posted 13/01/2019 at 21:42:25
Off to Monaco, apparently.
Drew O'Neall
126 Posted 13/01/2019 at 23:27:58
Not good enough. Next.
Jim Hardin
127 Posted 14/01/2019 at 17:38:30
We are more than 10 points from top 6 at this point. If this player is good enough to make up the gap with his goals in the games remaining, then go get him. If he is not, then wait until summer. If the club buys Zouma or Chelsea refuses to sell, then try to loan in the player for next season.
David Ellis
128 Posted 15/01/2019 at 04:41:17
Not the answer. Agree with Mr Ferns. Not a clear improvement on what we currently have (Tosun and Calvert-Lewin). In any event, the team needs to gel and link up better – this is the way to improve rather than always hankering after a shiny new player.

Also, a nod to the black-to-black and white-to-white player comparisons – it has always irked me. This lad is nothing like Lukaku and Lukaku wouldn't be what we are looking for either.

Kase Chow
129 Posted 15/01/2019 at 06:59:24
Mike #117,

You don't find our football and never-ending midtable finishes boring? And this is dross to actually state it?

Sorry if it hurts when I say it out loud but being an Everton fan over the totality of my life has been utterly boring. And I hate saying that.

My best moment: winning the FA Cup in 1995. 2nd best: avoiding relegation by beating Wimbledon on the last day in 1994.

Sure there's been loads of good individual great moments in between (Andy Johnson derby, beating Man City post-Lescott etc etc) but the reality of it is that Everton fans my age don't have a lot to hang on to... and one of the brightest lights of my era is derided like a Judas (Moyes).

So yes, being an Everton fan in my lifetime has been largely one big disappointment. ‘"We'll go and support someone else then." Right... How? How do you change your blood? How can you surgically remove your arm and replace it?

Fact is, I'm stuck with Everton and Everton are stuck with me.

"Well shut up and support the team then" — I do. Publicly I would NEVER say what I've just said. I support the player and the club and everything about us. Liverpool can win the league this season, we're still better than them.

"Well keep your comments to yourself then" — Why? I'm on a public forum debating my beloved Everton.

Returning to the subject: Everton are bereft of goalscorers. Also, players that can run in behind and stretch teams.

During the World Cup, many people derided Sterling and his contribution and said he should be dropped for missing a few chances. I said then that those people didn't understand football and the space that his runs made and what he brought to the team. And yes, I say the same about Batshuyai because we could play a completely different game if we had him.

And thus I do believe that people that don't want him don't actually understand what he does off the ball and how that can help us massively.

I've not (unlike you) been personal towards anyone.

Maybe it is you that provides standard dross? I hope that it's not you that's so vocal towards things and people and players you dislike. And I hope it's not you constantly putting the players under pressure on a Saturday with usual moans and groans. Thanks for your constructive response and breakdown of why a goalscorer and someone who would run in behind wouldn't help us – good one, pal!

Martin Nicholls
130 Posted 17/01/2019 at 20:21:46
Telegraph now speculating that the fee Chelsea are after is £40million – my post #112 refers.
Justin Doone
131 Posted 18/01/2019 at 00:46:52
He's not worth £20M, never mind £40M!

Another failed player who had potential but has gone backwards over the last few years.

I'd rather bid £40M for Lukaku. Not that Utd would sell at that price but he's a far better player.

Could we not loan Moratta or Sanchez instead? I know, they want Champions League football... but it's rather get knocked back than buy Batshuayi.

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