Everton needs to remodel their midfield and make it robust and resilient. A number of midfielders have a poor fitness record which often forces them out of the team and jeopardizes the team balance. In a bid to reinforce the core, Everton have shown interest in RC Lens midfielder Cheick Doucoure.
The tales of Fabian Delph’s tragic fitness records have already been told. Andre Gomes is no exception. His failure to find consistent fitness and be available for selections casts doubt on his future. Allan has been nursing knocks all season and is now also linked with a return to Italy. There could be a gaping void to be filled in the midfield.
The names of Conor Gallagher, Ederson Silva and Joao Palhinha have already been mentioned. It appears that Everton are carrying out extensive surveys in the market looking for a midfielder, possibly, a holding midfielder. It was Frank Lampard’s wish even in the winter transfer window.
It appears that Everton along with a host of Premier League clubs have registered interest in RC Lens midfielder Doucoure. The 22 year old has had a stellar campaign with Lens as Franck Haise’s side finished seventh in Ligue 1.
Everton show interest in RC Lens midfielder Cheick Doucoure
According to Mirror, Everton along with Arsenal, Crystal Palace and Brighton have shown interest in buying Doucoure. The holding midfielder made 34 appearances for Lens, scored one and assisted four goals.
The Mali international is bursting onto the scene and brimming with potential. He is set to leave Lens this summer and is inclined to join a Premier League side. Doucoure has a market value of £9 million as per Transfermarkt but with a long list of clubs interested, there can surely be a bidding war and Mirror suggests that he could be easily sold for more than double his market value.
Doucoure is an excellent ball carrier which can be justified through his stats. He averages 6.26 progressive carries and 6.87 progressive passes per game, putting him in the top seven per cent of midfielders to register those kinds of numbers in Europe’s top five leagues. Passing is another impressive facet of his game, recording an 87.6% pass completion rate per 90 minutes. He attempts close to 60 passes per game and creates 2.63 shot creating actions per game.
As a holding midfielder, one of the primary jobs is to guard the backline and intercept through balls. Doucoure records 2.26 interceptions and 2.63 tackles per game. In fact, he has won third-most tackles in Ligue 1 this season. (stats vis FBref)
He has been termed as a complete midfielder by his peers and his game does support that notion. A signing like Doucoure can tick all the boxes for Everton. He’s playing top quality football, at 22 he still has time on his side to hone his skills and will have a fair resale value in the future.
Perhaps, it wouldn’t look too bad to have two Doucoures in the team. Abdoulaye Doucoure could potentially influence the younger Doucoure to join him at Goodison Park because the 22 year old is a wanted commodity and there are many waiting in line.