Copyrighted by James Smith © 2010





Everton outcast Aiden McGeady in demand as Sunderland and Middlesbrough battle for his signature
The Republic of Ireland winger is not short of offers after PNE stint
1 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton could benefit as a potential auction develops for the services of unwanted winger Aiden McGeady. The Republic of Ireland international, who has a year to run on his Blues deal, is wanted by Preston North End where he spent a successful loan spell last term, along with Championship newcomers Middlesbrough and Sunderland. North End lost manager Simon Grayson to Sunderland last week, and the Yorkshireman could make a quick return to try and lure the Blues midfielder to his new club  The ECHO understands that Middlesbrough currently lead the race for the 31-year-old's signature, but he is believed to have hugely enjoyed his time at Deepdale and would be happy to return on a permanent basis. Either way it should mean the Blues could make some financial return on a player they signed from Spartak Moscow for a small fee in January 2014. The squad numbers available for Everton's incoming transfers next season   The former Celtic wideman made 43 appearances for the Toffees and scored just once under Roberto Martinez. He was surplus to requirements under Ronald Koeman, but fared better last term during his season-long spell at PNE, scoring eight goals in 35 appearances.

Tom Cleverley gives classy farewell to Everton fans after completing Watford move
Midfielder has sealed £8m transfer - but took time to thank Blues fans for their support during Goodison spell
1 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Tom Cleverley completed his £8m move to Watford - and then gave a classy farewell message to Everton supporters. The midfielder leaves Goodison having been deemed surplus to requirements by Blues boss Ronald Koeman . The 27-year-old made 42 appearances during his two-year spell on Merseyside, though spent the second half of last season on loan at Watford, where he will now move permanently. But reflecting on his time at Everton, Cleverley had only good things to say. He said: “When I look back on my career, to be able to say I’ve played for Everton as well as Aston Villa and Manchester United, historically three of the biggest clubs in English football, that’s something I’m massively proud of. "Before I joined, I knew what a historic place Goodison was and about the great atmosphere it creates. “I made a lot of good friends at Everton, the chairman (Bill Kenwright) was great and I really have a lot of respect for both managers I worked under. “But, like at Manchester United, I felt like I knew the time was right to move on.  “I spoke to the manager at the start of January and basically said I’m not the most patient of footballers and I felt like it was good for everyone for me to move on. “Watford and a couple of other clubs were interested but I was really keen on the Watford move and thankfully it’s turned out well. I’m enjoying myself at Vicarage Road and hopefully I can kick on now." Cleverley, who joined from United in 2015, believes his new club are going places. “It seems a club that are on the rise," he added. "Everyone from the owner down is very ambitious about the club improving and, for me personally, I’m competing on a Saturday again, I’m playing football again and, for a professional, that’s what it’s all about.  “But I just want to say thanks to everyone at Everton for giving me the chance to play for such a special team. “Unfortunately it didn’t quite work out and I don’t think they saw the best of me but good luck to them in the future, I’ll always look out for the team’s results and hopefully they carry on improving.”

Everton close to deal for teenage French striker Boris Mathis - reports
The 19-year-old Metz forward has been pictured at Finch Farm
1 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are close to clinching a deal for Metz striker Boris Mathis, according to reports in France. The 19-year-old, who made two senior appearance in Ligue 1 last term, is reportedly due to sign a two year contract. Mathis would link-up with David Unsworth's title winning u-23s squad for next season. Speculation over the deal was sparked after the youngster was photographed standing in front of the Everton crest outside the Blues Finch Farm training ground. Mathis previously trained at Lyon's academy before moving to Metz. L'Equipe report that other clubs have been tracking the teenager, but Everton's interest is the most serious and advanced. Reports elsewhere have previously claimed that Everton and West Ham are monitoring Lille’s young forward Martin Terrier. Footmercato insists that Ronald Koeman has sent scouts to watch the 19-year-old on three ocsasions.

Goals, strops and a Barca schooling: Everton new boy Henry Onyekuru's unstoppable drive
The Blues new £7m forward is a young man going places in a hurry
1 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
That's one way to describe Henry Onyekuru . Of course it's essential to be driven in professional sport, and Everton's new £7m forward certainly let's nothing stand in his way. He has his eyes set at the top - and will start next season in the shirt of the Belgian champions, with the knowledge that his every game will count towards the following season when the Premier League, and Goodison, beckons. He made it to Europe by beating the odds to be selected for the Qatari-backed Aspire academy, a vehicle to promote football across the globe and find talent wherever it operates. From the coastal Nigerian city of Onitsha he was sent to Aspire's Senegal base to train. From there Belgium; namely KAS Eupen, a small club owned by Aspire which operates in the country's top flight. Thanks to their Qatari owners, Eupen has a distinctly Catalan influence these days. Josep Colomer is a former director at Barcelona's La Masia academy and Eupen's coach, Jordi Condom, is another ex La Masia alumni who favours a Barca-esque possession style from his team. Little wonder then that their star pupil came to 'Mr Barcelona' Ronald Koeman's attention eventually. With their Middle East backing Eupen may be small but they're far from skint. So when an ambitious Onyekuru tried to find a way to a bigger stage, with Celtic interested in January, they held firm. He sulked and disappeared from the first team frame for a period before thinking better of his stance. A stint in the reserves focused his mind and angry Eupen fans swiftly forgave him as the goals started to flow. Aspire compromised in the end and agreed to a summer move. Enter Koeman , who wasted no time bustling to the front of the queue of admirers. Other clubs offered better personal terms but, single-minded once again, Onyekuru knew what he wanted. “I begged with my agent I need to play inside the pitch and not just the financial aspect for my career I need a coach that will push me to make a good career for me" he told "So I choose Everton because the coach really wants me and I am going to take a loan to Anderlecht, so it’s good for my career." Coaches at Eupen were dazzled by how quickly Onyekuru's technical prowess developed from when he first arrived as raw potential. Rough edges remain still but the refinements evidenced already are enough to whet Evertonian appetites. A clinical finisher, he has a ferocious right-footed shot and mesmeric dribbling ability. He doesn't lack self belief, reportedly telling his mother he would bag 25 goals before the start of last term.
Remarkably, he did. He knew he would. His mind is singularly focused on the next phase now. Blues fans will be casting excited glances at the Belgium top flight scores next season. In 12 months time, something special could be in store.

Why Everton boss Ronald Koeman is best equipped to avoid the sophmore slump
The Blues boss will be wary of downturn suffered by predecessors
1 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Ronald Koeman has much to look forward to and achieve over the next year with Everton, including hopefully breaking a recent second season curse for Blues’ bosses. The sophomore slump is a recognised phenomenon in all sorts of fields, including sport, music and television or film. Much like The Stone Roses’ Second Coming album or woeful sequels stinking out the cinema (The Matrix Reloaded springs to mind), repeating blindingly good debuts can be tricky. It can even be explained psychologically, because earlier success can reduce subsequent effort, or statistically, by regression to the mean (where if an initial measurement, or say, league position, is extreme, the second measurement will be closer to the average). In football, second season syndrome is often applied to promoted teams struggling after relatively elevated league positions in their first spell in a new division. It can also be applied to Koeman’s two predecessors in the Everton hotseat though. Both Roberto Martinez and David Moyes brought a feel-good factor to the club in their debut campaigns before suffering a trend of dismal results. Martinez took the club to fifth in 2013/14, its highest position in five years, and European qualification. In his first full season (2002/3), Moyes lifted Everton up to seventh, only the club’s second ever top-half Premier League finish at the time, and a significant improvement on 15th in the previous campaign. Martinez’s refreshing attacking, possession-based football appeared fragile and defensively weak second time round. After at one stage having to admit the club was in a relegation fight, the 2014/15 season culminated in a disappointing 11th placed finish. Moyes endured a more torrid sequel. His team’s solidity and organisation which earned initial plaudits morphed into a lack of creativity and inspiration in the follow-up production. Everton’s 2003/4 season ended with a 5-1 thrashing at Manchester City and a 17th place finish, closing the curtain on a miserable campaign. David Moyes looked dejected as his Everton team were thrashed 5-1 by Manchester City at The City of Manchester Stadium on May 15, 2004
There are a few pointers though which suggest Koeman could break the recent tradition. Firstly, Martinez’s squad struggled to combine the demands of the Europa League with the ordinary business of winning Premier League matches - a challenge Koeman and his players must face. The Blues topped a Europa League group containing Wolfsburg and Lille under their Spanish boss and progressed through the first knock-out round in February against Swiss side BSC Young Boys. By the start of December, when they’d already played five European fixtures, they were 11th in the Premier League. Martinez blamed a disappointing 1-1 home draw against Hull City in December, in which the Blues started brightly but faded, on fatigue caused by a busy schedule of games. He said: “There were a few tired legs. “The amount of games has been incredible.” He knew his squad well, because they went on to lose five of their next six games over the Christmas period. Everton must show they have the intelligence to break down teams who are willing to sit back against them this season too, especially at Goodison Park where they enjoy a formidable reputation. By the start of March in Martinez’s second season, and back-to-back 2-0 defeats against Arsenal and Stoke City, the manager said the club was fighting for its Premier League future. The promise of the first season was forgotten. The Blues had 28 points from 28 games - their lowest tally at that stage in Premier League history. They remained in European competition into March, before being knocked out by Dynamo Kiev in the round of 16. Perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not, they then went on a five match unbeaten run, including a season’s best performance in beating Man United 3-0, and coasted to a mid-table finish. Koeman has been able to spend more and sign better players, more quickly, than Martinez. The squad depth Koeman appears to be engineering this summer means his Everton should be better equipped to deal with the two-games-a-week schedule they now face. Martinez couldn’t solve the team’s defensive problems in his second season either and Koeman appears to have a head start on him. Under the Dutchman, Everton have been much stronger at the back and if he can sign Michael Keane, he will be closer to the defensive options he needs to ensure there is no second season collapse. Martinez had an admirable, if at times misguided, belief in the importance of attacking, attractive football and an unwillingness to change his team to adapt to the opposition or to grind out results. Koeman is a more pragmatic manager, again making a slump down the table less likely. Young players were backed to the hilt by Martinez, with Ross Barkley, John Stones and James McCarthy playing 38, 26 and 39 times respectively in his first season and similar amounts in the second. The Spaniard’s faith in them was a great confidence boost for his young players but more experienced professionals may have coped better. Moyes’ team, on the other hand, lacked a spark second time round and Koeman has moved quickly to improve his options in the final third by signing Davy Klaassen. Romelu Lukaku’s future could dictate how much attacking threat Everton have next season, although the club appear to be on the verge of signing Spanish striker Sandro and would surely spend again if Lukaku left. The money the three managers have spent also points to Koeman facing a more comfortable sophomore season than Martinez and Moyes. Moyes’ biggest acquisitions in his first two seasons were Joseph Yobo and Richard Wright for £4.5million and £3.5million respectively. Martinez had more money to play with after a £13m deal for James McCarthy and a flurry of high-profile loans in his first transfer window and acquiring Lukaku on a permanent deal for £25million ahead of the second season. Apart from those additions, his spending was relatively modest with loans and cheap deals. Koeman has been able to spend £20million or more on four players already (Yannick Bolasie, Morgan Schneiderlin, Jordan Pickford and Klaassen) while Keane could break the same barrier if he arrives. The current manager is also smartly addressing the weaknesses he has identified in his team and will now have options in a number of positions to cope with a busier calendar. How has the Dutchman himself fared in his second seasons at the helm of his previous clubs then? He does frequently start at a canter wherever he has been but any subsequent dips in performance have been minor and nothing to trouble Everton supporters. In his first half-season at his debut club as a manager, Holland’s Vitesse Arnhem, he guided them to fourth and UEFA Cup qualification. In the following season, 2000/1 - his only full season at the club - they dropped by two places to sixth. Having earned the right to manage the country’s most successful club, Ajax, he maintained his first season form by winning the Eredivisie and the Dutch Cup. His second-season “slump”, as only the uncharitable could call it, saw the club fall all the way to second and they also failed to retain the cup. It’s hardly a downturn to be held against him. The team regained the title in his third season to show it was no flash in the pan. In his only season at Benfica (2005/6), the team finished third in the league and reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League, which was not enough to keep Koeman in his job. His first-season success was maintained at PSV, where he once again won the Dutch title in his only campaign with the club. Spells at Valencia and AZ Alkmaar didn’t last long enough to test his staying power but at Feyenoord, there was a minimal decline from first season to second - from runners-up in 2011/12 to third in 2013/14. His most recent club will hopefully provide the model for his Everton career though. Ronald Koeman (R) and brother Erwin Koeman celebrate a Southampton win over QPR at St Mary's Stadium in September 2014. After a more-than-respectable first campaign with Southampton, in which the team finished seventh in the league, they pushed on. To repeat such progress with the Blues would make Champions League qualification a possibility. The club’s intent in the transfer market this summer shows they and the manager are keen to make that a reality and avoid the curse of the difficult second season.

As Michael Keane's Everton move set to be announced Burnley plan for life without him - reports
The Blues could announce the capture of Keane and Sandro Ramirez on Monday
1 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Burnely have reportedly started planning for life without Micheal Keane as Everton prepare to unveil the £25m England defender. The Clarets have been linked with Sheffield Wednesday centre back Tom Lees as they prepare for Keane's exit, which could be announced on Monday. Everton will pay an initial £25m and an extra £6m in potential ad ons. Keane returns from holiday tomorrow, and Sean Dyche knows he will have a considerable gap in his defence to fill. Wednesday and Lees missed out on a place in the Premier League last season after they lost their play-off semi-final against Huddersfield Town.

What progress of other Nigerians in Europe says about Henry Onyekuru's chance of Everton success
Everton paid £7m for the 20-year-old forward from KAS Eupen
19:00, 1 JUL 2017
Liverpool Echo
With the signing of 20-year-old Nigerian striker Henry Onyekuru, Everton hope they have acquired the latest in a line of talented young players from the West African country. Everton fought off interest from Arsenal and West Ham to sign the player who finished as top scorer in the Belgian First Division last season and who will now be loaned out to Anderlecht. The loan is necessary because Onyekuru does not yet qualify for a United Kingdom work permit, but Everton will be happy to let the player gain further experience of European football away from the spotlight of the English Premier League. Due to the massive popularity of football in the country and the role of its local football academies, such as the Pepsi academy which produced John Obi Mikel and Peter Odemwingie, there has long been a tradition of youth excellence in Nigeria. The U-20 side have also won their African Cup of Nations tournament the most (seven times), including just two years ago. As of April, 23 players of Nigerian descent had been called up by England youth sides, including Everton’s Ademola Lookman at U-19 and U-20 levels. Young promise hasn’t always translated into staying power in the best European leagues though. As the website Ventures Africa argued in an interesting feature , national youth teams worldwide, not just in Nigeria, only provide a handful of players, at best, who go on to become regular senior internationals. It also puts forward some Nigeria-specific problems though. The country has, at times, been too preoccupied with winning youth trophies over player development, according to the feature’s author Yomi Kazeem. In the same article, German based football journalist Oma Akatugba said: “Football is an outlet for many young players and as soon as they get into Europe, they are seen as bread winners saddled with the responsibility of saving their families from poverty. “Rather than focus on their game, young players are pressured by family issues and excessive demands from home.” He added that a lack of proper structure in Nigerian football can mean players who have shown great talent stall in their development once they are in Europe. It would be premature to hail Onyekuru as a guaranteed star for tomorrow then. What can be learned about his chances from other Nigerian prospects fighting to make the grade in Europe? Here are 10 who have been hailed as ones to watch and how they are getting on at the moment. Some can inspire Onyekuru to follow in their footsteps while others are worth Everton’s scouts keeping an eye on.
Kelechi Nwakali (Arsenal)
To start with, two stars of Nigeria’s U-17 World Cup win in Chile two years ago. The first is Arsenal’s Kelechi Nwakali, who was named the player of the tournament. Kelechi Nwakali of Nigeria and Arsenal poses with the bronze boot after the FIFA U-17 Men's World Cup 2015 final
The forward scored three goals in the competition and was convinced by his uncle, former Arsenal hero Nwankwo Kanu, to join the north London club in 2016. The 19-year-old can play in a variety of attacking positions and became a regular on loan at Dutch side MVV Maastricht last season. As Keane's Everton move set to be announced Burnley move on - reports
Victor Osimhen (Wolfsburg)
Still only 18 years old, Osimhen announced himself with a record-breaking 10 goals in the U-17 World Cup tournament in 2015. Despite being 6ft 1in, he has pace and quick feet and impressed enough to be signed by Bundesliga club Wolfsburg in January.
Victor Osimhen looks on during a Nigeria training session
He rejected Arsenal for the move, demonstrating again that the north London club put a lot of stock in the next generation of Nigerian stars. Osimhen has only made two appearances for the German club so far. Wolfsburg’s coach at the time of Osmihen’s signing, Valerien Ismael, said the club will help him improve his physical strength and gain more experience of German football.
Kelechi Iheanacho (Manchester City)
The best performer in Nigeria’s U-17 World Cup triumph in 2013, with six goals and seven assists, he joined Man City’s academy in 2014. The striker turned that opportunity into first-team football with one of England’s best teams and made 64 appearances, scoring 21 goals, in the last two seasons. He has failed to win the faith of City manager Pep Guardiola though, and Iheanacho could leave this summer. Interest from Premier League clubs, including Leicester City and West Ham United, is reported to be high so there could be further chances for him to progress in England.
Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City)
Despite only moving to the Premier League in January, when he signed for Leicester from Belgian side Genk for £17million, Ndidi played a large part in the turn in his club’s fortunes in the second half of the season. He fulfilled a duty relinquished by N’Golo Kante when he left the club through his excellent ability to win the ball from the opposition. Seamus Coleman (L) and Wilfred Ndidi (R) of Leicester challenge for the ball
Ndidi has shown the physical power, including in the air, to compete in England while also having an eye for spectacular goals, including a thunderbolt strike against Stoke City.
Taiwo Awoniyi (Liverpool)
Forward Awoniyi has represented Nigeria from U-17 to U-23 levels, including four goals during the 2013 U-17 World Cup triumph. Still only 19 years old, he joined Liverpool in August 2015 and has since been loaned to FSV Frankfurt and Dutch side NEC Nijmegen. He has failed to find the net with any regularity so far though, with three goals in the last two seasons.
Taiwo Awoniyi
Liverpool reportedly want to loan him to an English club but this may not be possible because he hasn’t played enough minutes of football to earn a work permit. Another loan move to the continent appears likely then, but his promise will need to turn into match experience in England soon or his Liverpool career may falter. Everton will hope Onyekuru doesn’t fall into a similar cycle of loan moves.
Ifeanyi Mathew (Lillestrom)
Another star of the 2013 U-17 World Cup winners, midfielder Mathew, 20, joined Norwegian top-flight club Lillestrom SK in 2016. An influential attacking presence, he scored twice in the country’s Africa 2015 U-20s Cup of Nations win.
Ifeanyi Mathew of Team Lillestrom Sportsklubb LSK
He has recently been linked with Belgian side Anderlecht so could be on the track to joining Onyekuru in one of the top European leagues.
Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense)
Voted Africa’s most promising prospect in 2015, he is a box-to-box midfielder who can play on either wing and is a frequent goalscorer. He joined Portuguese Primeira Liga side CD Feirense in January 2016, but as with other compatriots, struggled to gain a work permit initially and didn’t make his debut until April the same year. Oghenekaro Etebo celebrates a goal during 2016 Summer Olympics
Etebo has gone on to score six goals in 17 games. After becoming the first player in 44 years to score four goals in an Olympics fixture at Rio, he is, perhaps unsurprisingly, on Arsenal’s radar.
Alex Iwobi (Arsenal)
Born in Nigerian city Lagos, Iwobi moved to England with his family at the age of four and joined Arsenal while he was still at primary school.After eye-catching early performances for the club’s first team in 2015-16, he had a more testing second season. In a floundering team in which morale was low and patience from the fans non-existent, his freedom to try the imaginative was curtailed and his confidence appeared to wilt. It has raised the prospect of him being loaned out by the club, so he remains one with more to prove.
Moses Simon (Gent)
The 21-year-old winger developed at the famous Ajax academy for a year in 2013 before moving to Belgian side Gent where he has made his mark.
Moses Daddy-Ajala Simon of Gent in action
He scored seven goals in 17 league games in his first season with the club and it has been rumoured he has been watched by Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and West Bromwich Albion in recent months.
Isaac Success (Watford)
Another player who has yet to show he is capable of progressing at the top level, though at only 21-years-old, there could still be much more to come from him. After two seasons with La Liga side Granada, he signed for Watford for a reported £12.5million last summer. The forward hasn’t flourished and fell out with manager Walter Mazzarri. Success only had one start in the second half of the season but with Mazzarri having left the club, the Nigerian is confident of putting things right in his second season.

Everton teenager Kieran Dowell wants to emulate Blues idol Mikel Arteta
The Boyhood Evertonian has modelled his game on former fans' favourite
2 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton youngster Kieran Dowell has revealed how he strives to emulate his idol Mikel Arteta . The boyhood Blue cheered Arteta on from the stands at Goodison Park, and the former Paris St Germain and Rangers star made a big impression on him. Dowell, who joined the Toffees academy aged seven in 2004, modelled his game on fans' favourite Arteta, who made 209 classy appearances for Everton. “He was someone I always looked up to as a kid,” said Dowell. “He was so graceful on the ball and he made everything look easy. "He was great to watch and he is someone who I looked at and tried to implement areas of his game into my own.  “I play in similar positions, so I was always drawn to him. “I remember watching him a lot but the 2010/11 season really stands out for me. He scored some great free-kicks that year and his one against Hull City [below] sticks in my memory.” Dowell will hope to make tangible progress this term after struggling to break into the first team set-up last season. The Ormskirk-born teenager made his full debut at the end of the 2015/16 season, starting the last home game against Norwich City under caretaker managers Joe Royle and David Unsworth. His first appearance for the club was in December 2014, during the Europa League group match against FC Krasnodar at Goodison.

Everton's transfer business has made rest of league look "a bit stupid" says Liverpool legend
Robbie Fowler has been impressed with Blues this summer
2 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
made the rest of the Premier League look “a bit stupid” with the speed of their transfer activity - according to Liverpool hero Robbie Fowler! The former Reds striker has praised the Blues for their business and says the rest of the league should sit up and take note. Everton have secured deals for Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen and Henry Onyekuru while Sandro Ramirez and Michael Keane are due in this week. Gylfi Sigurdsson remains a prime target with Ronald Koeman also expected to pursue another striker and right-back in the window. Fowler has been impressed. “I wouldn’t presume to suggest that Liverpool have, in any way, failed in the transfer market because it is a long summer and you have to wait for the window to close to get a full picture,” he said.  “They have ­stolen a march on the rest of the ­Premier League clubs and even made them look a bit stupid.  “I honestly think that doing your ­business early this summer is not only wise, but vital, because I reckon prices are only going one way as deals start to get done... through the roof.”

Everton's move for Sandro Ramirez from Malaga set to be confirmed on Monday
Atletico Madrid were also interested but their transfer ban stopped the move from going any further
The Independent
Ed Malyon @eaamalyon
Sunday 2 July 2017
The deal will go through on Monday, when his release clause kicks in Getty
Sandro Ramirez’s drawn-out move to Everton is expected to be confirmed on Monday. The Spanish Under-21 international has agreed terms on a deal with the Merseyside club but the transfer has been waiting on a contract clause to come into effect. From July 3, it is understood that Sandro’s contract with Malaga would contain a €6m (£5.1m) release clause. While Everton were initially hoping Malaga might agree to a deal for the same price to be completed before that date, the Andalucians have held firm and Sandro will instead be announced this week. After leaving Barcelona on a free transfer a year ago, Sandro impressed on the Costa del Sol scoring 14 La Liga goals. Atletico Madrid met with the striker’s agent but after failing with their appeal against a transfer ban, saw the deal collapse.

Which Everton players will return for first day of pre-season training?
Blues squad due back at Finch Farm on Monday morning
2 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton return to Finch Farm tomorrow to begin their pre-season schedule. And it is expected that the bulk of Ronald Koeman’s squad will be back at the club’s Halewood training complex. Fitness coach Jan Kluitenberg and the sport science team are set to perform a series of tests to gauge the players’ fitness levels in the morning before training with Koeman fully gets underway later in the day. Koeman has just over a week with the players before they jet to Tanzania for their first friendly of the summer when they face Gor Mahia FC on July 13. It is anticipated that the group of players granted late returns to pre-season training due to international commitments will join up with the Blues squad next week and then ahead of the training camp in Holland in mid-July. Everton’s under-20s World Cup winning contingent - Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Ademola Lookman, Jonjoe Kenny, Kieran Dowell and Callum Connolly - will be among the later arrivals. Romelu Lukaku, Kevin Mirallas, Ashley Williams, Idrissa Gueye and new signing Davy Klaassen were all involved in World Cup qualifiers and friendly games last month so may return later in the month. New goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and defender Mason Holgate, who played for England at the u-21s European Championships, are not yet due back at Finch Farm.
Players expected at training on Monday
Maarten Stekelenburg
Joel Robles
Leighton Baines
Phil Jagielka
Ramiro Funes Mori
Matthew Pennington
Brendan Galloway
Tyias Browning
Luke Garbutt
Seamus Coleman*
Morgan Schneiderlin
Tom Davies
James McCarthy
Kevin Mirallas
Ross Barkley
Yannick Bolasie*
Gareth Barry
Mo Besic
Shani Tarashaj
Oumar Niasse
(*suffering with long-term injuries)

Fans of Manchester United, Chelsea and SEVENTY other clubs back Liverpool and Everton's S*n boycott
A motion at the national conference of football fans has been unanimously approved and could lead to action all over the country
2 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Fans of Manchester United , Chelsea, Arsenal and around 70 other football clubs have agreed to call for a national boycott of The S*n newspaper . A motion at today’s national Football Supporters Federation (FSF) summit which called on all fans groups to lobby their clubs and retailers in their areas to stop selling The S*n was unanimously passed. All Premier League fan groups represented including Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal and others from the Championship and lower leagues will now go back to their local areas and pick up the campaign that was launched by the Total Eclipse of the S*n group in Liverpool. The S*n is reviled on Merseyside for its coverage of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster in which 96 Liverpool fans were unlawfully killed and has been boycotted widely in the region. Both Liverpool and Everton football clubs have this year banned The S*n from all club premises as well. The motion was proposed at St George’s Park in Burton today by Spirit of Shankly member Roy Bentham and seconded by Dave Kelly of the Everton Supporters Trust. The fact it was passed means the call to boycott the newspaper is now official Football Supporters Federation policy and means the FSF will now “call on all retailers and vendors of newspapers in their areas to stop selling The S*n.” Speaking after the motion was passed, Mr Bentham said: “We are absolutely thrilled that the motion was passed and passed unanimously. “Usually a motion will create some debate or amendments, but this just passed straight through without a single delegate voting against it.  “It means that all these fans groups up and down the country will now go and put pressure on their clubs to ban The S*n and to call on shopkeepers and vendors around the grounds to stop selling it.” Mr Bentham said it was particularly poignant that the motion was passed just days after it was revealed that six people will face charges over the Hillsborough disaster. Mr Kelly said: “From Everton’s point of view our club has supported Liverpool and its fans from day one. “We have supported the magnificent Hillsborough Justice Campaign and have been proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with them. “This was not just an attack on Liverpool fans, it was an attack on our city and what The Total Eclipse campaign has done has spread that message out more widely - this motion should add to that now.” The motion goes details some of the lies printed in the newspaper following the tragedy, including the claim that some fans picked the pockets of victims and that “drunken Liverpool fans viciously attacked workers as they tried to rescue victims and that police officers, firemen and ambulance crew were punched, kicked and urinated upon.” It adds: “The FSF recognises and will not forget the hurt and distress caused to the people of Merseyside and to the wider football family by the lies and smears printed in the Sun, and, in particular, the distress caused to the families of the 96. “Neither will the FSF forget the Sun’s refusal to apologise properly for the hurt it caused.”

How hard work and dedication have driven Michael Keane to the brink of Everton move

"For some of the lads at the top of the group, everything just came naturally - Michael really had to work at it," says Blues target's former youth coach
2 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton target Michael Keane 's rise to Premier League stardom wasn't always a foregone conclusion, according to his former youth coach at Manchester United. The Blues are expected to confirm the £25m signing of the Burnley centre-back next week after watching him force his way into the England squad with the Clarets last term.  Confirmation of the deal is likely to come as early as Monday, but Keane's former youth coach at United has revealed how hard work has been the driving force behind the centre-back becoming a defender of international class. Paul McGuinness, who worked for United for 28 years, told Sky Sports: "Michael was part of a very good group with players like Ravel Morrison, Jesse Lingard and Ryan Tunnicliffe. "He was always a little bit behind the others. He had to fight to cling on to their coat tails, if you like, but in a sense that was an advantage for him. It helped develop his determination and resilience. "For some of the lads at the top of the group - including Michael's brother, Will - everything just came naturally. Michael really had to work at it. "He had to concentrate and try to improve. But if you're working hard, you're learning and you're listening to your coaches, it all adds up. "Every year he was gaining more than lads who might have been more talented but didn't have those traits." Keane's capture is expected to be confirmed alongside Malaga striker Sandro Ramirez, who will join Jordan Pickford, Henry Onyekuru and Davy Klaassen who were all signed last month.

Everton's pursuit of Gylfi Sigurdsson may require patience as Swansea City dig in
Phil Kirkbride on why a blistering start to the window may be forced to slow down
2 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Apparently good things come to those who wait. Everton, however, are showing that even better things come to those who don’t hang about. The Blues are racing through the summer at such a rate that by the end of this week they should have added Sandro Ramirez and Michael Keane to Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen and Henry Onyekuru. Five signings, in deals worth almost £100m and the window only officially opened yesterday. It’s also worth noting that it took Everton until August 2 to sign an outfield player last summer. By the same date this year, Everton could have all of their transfer business wrapped up. Well, maybe not quite all of it. There’s a growing feeling that after ticking players off their wishlist in double-quick time (Robbie Fowler says they’ve made the rest of the league look “stupid”) patience may now be Everton’s biggest virtue in the market. Gylfi Sigurdsson remains Ronald Koeman’s prime transfer target but he’s also Swansea City’s prime asset and they don’t want to sell. By beating the drop last season, they have only tightened their hold on the 27-year-old and, as was said earlier this week, Sigurdsson is Swansea’s Romelu Lukaku. Which brings us neatly onto his price tag. Despite the protestations from the Liberty, every player has a price. Lukaku’s is £100m. Sigurdsson’s looks like being in the region of £40m even though Swansea say he’s “priceless”. Paul Clement’s side, as they keep reiterating, have no intention of cashing in on their talisman and the word from South Wales is that Sigurdsson is settled and not the type to agitate for a move. It all leaves Everton facing a fight to sign him. But it’s one worth scrapping for and a fight they can win - it just might take some time. “I like him. “He’s a quality Premier League talent.  “He’s in a tough, competitive team but he provides that extra touch of quality.” That was Koeman speaking in late June last year, ahead of England’s game with Sigurdsson’s Iceland in Euro 2016 and his opinion hasn’t changed. Since Koeman moved to manage in England, the Swansea forward has been involved in the scoring or creating of 53 goals in 106 games - and has done so in a struggling team. In an upwardly mobile side such as Everton’s, Sigurdsson could be the final piece in the jigsaw. In many ways, fortune has favoured Everton the brave in the landing of Sandro Ramirez. Had the Court of Arbitration for Sport not upheld Atletico Madrid’s transfer ban then there’s a good chance the Spanish striker would be heading to the brand-spanking Wanda Metropolitano. But Everton, ambitious enough to have already made a move for Sandro, were ready to swoop once Atleti received the bad news. But maybe now, in the pursuit of Sigurdsson, fortune will favour the patient. In May, Koeman was asked how important it was for Everton to get their business done early. He said: “Always it is the best, but sometimes it is difficult, it’s all about clubs are playing until end season you have international break until June 13-14, our start of pre-season is July 3, that’s the best, but it’s not what normally happens.  “Last summer, I think several teams also had that problem again, when the Premier League starts 13-14 August, it is still not the team that will start one month later.” There was a clear desire at Everton for as much business as possible to be completed swiftly but Koeman’s also a realist and, no doubt, could foresee it taking longer to convince Swansea to sell their star man. But the Everton manager will be the first to tell you that Sigurdsson will be worth the wait. The Blues have worked with impressive speed so far but the most important thing now is for them to simply secure the Swansea man before the window shuts.

Michael Keane set for Everton medical as £25m move from Burnley edges closer
Blues closing in on 24-year-old defender
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are hoping to complete the signing of Michael Keane within the next 24 hours. The Blues are closing in on the Burnley defender in a deal which will see them pay £25m with potentially a further £6m due in add-ons. Keane returned from holiday on Sunday to complete his switch from Turf Moor and a medical was scheduled for today. Wayne Rooney (R) vies for the ball with Michael Keane at Turf Moor in April   Ronald Koeman made the 24-year-old his No1 defensive target this summer. Everton poised to seal Michael Keane signing in £25m deal from Burnley   Keane was interested in a return to boyhood club Manchester United but they prioritised the signing of Victor Lindelof from Benfica. The England centre-half knew moving to Old Trafford would come without guarantees of first-team football and so indicated he now preferred a move to Goodison.  Everton opened talks with Burnley and earlier this week reached an agreement to sign Keane.

Everton transfer rumours - Blues keeping tabs on Bournemouth's Josh King
A round-up of EFC transfer rumours and speculation from around the web
3 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton's summer transfer spending is showing no signs of slowing down. The Toffees have already spent big on Jordan Pickford and Davy Klaassen, while also landing Henry Onyekuru before loaning the youngster out to Anderlecht. Michael Keane and Sandro Ramirez will soon arrive at Goodison Park, with the Blues putting the finishing touches to both deals today. And then a move for Josh King could be next for Ronald Koeman, with the Daily Mirror reporting that the Blues are ready to rival Spurs for the Norway international. King, who scored 16 league goals last season, is said to be unsure about a move to Tottenham because of concerns over lack of game time. The 25-year-old is reportedly only keen to move to a club where he is guaranteed regular first team football. Swansea City's Gylfi Sigurdsson and Everton's Idrissa Gueye battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Liberty Stadium
Sigurdsson pursuit requires patience Koeman is said to be eyeing King as an alternative to Burnley's Andre Gray, with Olivier Giroud also linked with a move to Goodison Park to replace Romelu Lukaku.

Antonio Conte tells Chelsea to sign Romelu Lukaku at any price - even £100m
Matt Law,
The Telegraph
3 JULY 2017
Antonio Conte has told Chelsea that they must re-sign Romelu Lukaku at any price this summer – even if it means meeting Everton’s £100million valuation. Despite the club making moves for midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, central defender Antonio Rudiger and left-back Alex Sandro, it is striker Lukaku who is Conte’s number one target. Having told Diego Costa he is not part of his plans by text message, Chelsea head coach Conte is desperate to land Lukaku and is confident the 24-year-old can live up to any price tag. It is Conte and not club chiefs who identified Lukaku as the man to replace Costa ahead of Alvaro Morata, Andrea Belotti and others. Conte tried to sign Lukaku for Juventus during the Belgian’s first spell at Chelsea and believes he perfectly fits into his favoured systems of play, as either a lone striker or part of a front two. Chelsea are in negotiations with Atletico Madrid regarding a return to Spain for Costa and are expected to step up their bid to sign Lukaku soon. Everton have valued Lukaku at £100m, insisting they will not accept any less, but that has not scared off Conte who has made it clear to Chelsea that he wants the player at any cost. It will now be down to whether or not director Marina Granovskaia can negotiate Everton’s asking price down or whether she is willing to make Lukaku the world’s most expensive footballer. Manchester United have also shown an interest in Lukaku, but the former Anderlecht youngster favours a return to Chelsea where he feels he has unfinished business. A boyhood fan of the club, Lukaku did not score a single goal for Chelsea in his first spell that lasted three years, during which time he was loaned out to West Bromwich Albion and Everton.

Aaron Lennon part of Everton squad returning for pre-season training at Finch Farm
Blues back at training base for day of tests
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Aaron Lennon is part of the Everton squad that has returned for pre-season training today. The Blues squad are back at Finch Farm for a day of testing as their summer schedule gets underway. And Lennon, who had been suffering with a stress-related illness towards the end of last season, was among them. Michael Keane set for Everton medical as £25m move from Burnley edges closer
The 30-year-old had been detained under the Mental Health Act in May after being found at the side of a busy road close to the M602. Lennon, though, has been pictured with the rest of the Everton squad at the club’s Halewood training base today. Seamus Coleman and Yannick Bolasie , suffering with long-term injuries, also returned to training and joined players such as Phil Jagielka , Leighton Baines and Gareth Barry . Everton transfer rumours - Blues keeping tabs on Bournemouth's Josh King
Morgan Schneiderlin , Tom Davies , Ramiro Funes Mori , James McCarthy , Maarten Stekelenburg , Joel Robles and Mo Besic are also confirmed as being at training today. Ademola Lookman , fresh from winning the under-20s World Cup with England, is also at Finch Farm today.

Everton's squad returns for start of pre-season training
Blues players undergoing a series of tests at Finch Farm
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton’s players are being put through a series of fitness tests on the opening day of pre-season training. Ronald Koeman is overseeing the start of the summer schedule but fitness coach Jan Kluitenberg and the sports science team have taken the lead this morning. Ross Barkley , Leighton Baines and Morgan Schneiderlin are among the players to have returned to Finch Farm today. The Blues squad have been given a boost with Aaron Lennon’s return to the fold while Seamus Coleman and Yannick Bolasie , suffering with long-term injuries, are also with the squad today. Michael Keane set for Everton medical as £25m move from Burnley edges closer  Tom Davies , Phil Jagielka , Ramiro Funes Mori , Mo Besic , Maarten Stekelenberg , Joel Robles , Matty Pennington , Brendan Galloway and Ademola Lookman are also at training today. Everton’s first friendly of the summer takes place in Tanzania in 10 days’ time when they play Gor Mahia.

Date set for Everton's Davy Klaassen and Romelu Lukaku training return
First batch of Blues players being put through fitness tests by Jan Kluitenberg
3 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
New signing Davy Klaassen and wantaway striker Romelu Lukaku are expected to be among a clutch of Everton’s squad who return to pre-season training on Thursday. A contingent of Ronald Koeman’s players returned to Finch Farm this morning to begin the summer schedule. Fitness coach Jan Kluitenberg and the Blues’ sports science team put the group through a series of fitness tests ahead of full training with Koeman starting tomorrow. Ross Barkley, Leighton Baines and Morgan Schneiderlin were among the players to return today with Kluitenberg confirming that most of the remaining members of the squad are due back later in the week. Klaassen, Lukaku and others were involved in World Cup qualifiers and international friendlies after the end of the league campaign. Five of Everton’s young players were part of the triumphant under-20s World Cup side are expected on Thursday although Ademola Lookman returned to training today. New goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and Mason Holgate played in the u-21s European Championships which only finished last week and so it remains unclear if they will be among the returnees this week. Kluitenberg said: “This is day one for Everton, The first day we start with a lot of tests, physical tests of course, but a lot of medical tests.  “Thursday, most of the other players are coming in and will have the same routine as the players today. “The rest of the players will start tomorrow on the pitch, with and without the ball.” He added: “During the whole pre-season we like to build it up.”

Exciting times as Everton turn back the clock to top transfer spending charts
Blues revive the era of the 'Mersey Millionaires' to splash the most cash on new signings for the first time in a generation
3 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
It's a table which has been retweeted hundreds of times by excited Evertonians - because it shows their side sitting clear at the top. It’s a Premier League table, of sorts, but it doesn’t show league position; it shows spending since January 2017. Everton have outspent traditional big spenders Manchester City, cross park rivals Liverpool and previous season’s champions Leicester in that timescale. And the Blues will continue to spend, with further incomings almost certain. Since January 2017 Everton have splashed out on Morgan Schneiderlin (£20m), Ademola Lookman (£10m), Jordan Pickford (£30m), Davy Klaassen (£23.6m) and Henry Onyekuru (£6.8m). Sky’s calculations tot up a total of £92.85m, with more to come. Michael Keane and Sandro will inflate that figure by at least a further £30m, and new names are linked with the Blues almost daily. By spending so heavily Everton have turned back the clock 29 years. Michael Keane set for Everton medical as £25m move from Burnley edges closer
Not since the summer of 1988 have the one-time ‘Mersey Millionaires’ spent, comparatively, so big. The spending that summer was funded on the back of a shiny, new TV deal. Plenty of clubs splashed the cash - Tottenham ‘invested’ £1.7m on Paul Stewart and broke the British transfer record to lure Paul Gascoigne from Newcastle for £2m, while Liverpool paid a whopping £2.7m to bring Ian Rush back from Juventus - but no-one invested more than Everton. Everton's pursuit of Gylfi Sigurdsson may require patience as Swansea City dig in  Colin Harvey had ended his first season as manager in fourth place - a significant slide from the champions he inherited from Howard Kendall - and set about addressing that slump. Arsenal and Everton were prepared to break the British transfer record to lure Tony Cottee from West Ham, but Cottee preferred Goodison and moved north for £2.2m. Pat Nevin was signed from Chelsea for a fee determined by a transfer tribunal, an eye-watering £925,000.  Stuart McCall was only a little less expensive – £850,000, While Neil McDonald was a right back with the technical ability to flourish in central midfield and cost £525,000. Evertonians were expectant, and it took the four big signings just 34 seconds to click – Cottee scoring almost from the kick-off as Everton walloped Newcastle 4-0. Cottee went on to score a debut hat-trick and followed up with another matchwinner at Coventry – although Neville Southall needing to produce arguably the greatest individual performance from even his magnificent repertoire that day at Highfield Road suggested all was not as well as it appeared. Everton transfer rumours - Blues keeping tabs on Bournemouth's Josh King  By the end of September the Blues lay 10th – and finished the season eighth and beaten in the Cup final. The champions? Arsenal who had added one name to their squad, Steve Bould for a bargain price of £390,000!
Highest spending Premier League sides in 2017
Everton £92.85m
Manchester City £77m
Liverpool £34m
Leicester £32m
Bournemouth £31m
Crystal Palace £26.5m

Everton signing Sandro Ramirez hailed as 'really good goalscorer' by Ronald Koeman
Blues boss says striker has 'big future' after he arrives on four-year deal
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Ronald Koeman has labelled Sandro Ramirez as a "really good goalscorer" after the Blues completed his signing. Everton have today formally announced the capture of the Spanish striker on a four-year deal. The Blues triggered his £5.2m release clause at Malaga and swiftly agreed personal terms and performed the 21-year-old's medical. Everton were hoping to be able to announce his signing last month but Malaga held up the deal by refusing to sign the release forms until today. Koeman has revealed his delight at finally being able to add Sandro to his Blues squad.
Sandro Ramirez in action for Spain at the European U21 Championships
Sandro scores for Spain  “There was a lot of interest in Sandro because, of course, he’s a goalscorer, he’s young and he has a big future in the game," Koeman said. “We have been trying to bring in good players so we can have greater productivity in the team and he will bring that. He will bring a lot of good qualities and he’s a really good goalscorer, too.”

New Everton striker Sandro sets sights on Champions League
Spanish striker unveiled as Blues latest summer signing
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
New Everton striker Sandro says he has signed for a club "which is really on the up" and has already targeted Champions League football as an immediate aim. The Spanish striker has signed a four year deal, which was announced today after his existing deal with Malaga expired. Sandro said: "It’s a big jump in my career coming to the Premier League and for a club like Everton which is really on the up. They have got big plans and want to succeed and keep developing. "I’m hoping I can get to know my teammates as soon as possible, and want to adapt to the football and the way of life in the city. "Everton have made some big signings and we’re hoping we can put in a great season and hopefully then we can achieve that aim of getting in the Champions League. It will be a big season for us." Former Barcelona striker Sandro also pointed to the influence of boss Ronald Koeman in his decision to join Everton. “I’m very happy, this is a big step in my career,” he said. “I know I’m signing for a massive club in England. Everton is the ideal place for me, I’ve got the ideal manager who is going to keep giving me the confidence to improve my game. “I cannot wait to wear the blue shirt in front of the Everton fans at Goodison Park.  “I was lucky enough to play with some of the best players in the world and managed to win the odd trophy but the important thing now is that I’m very happy to be signing for Everton. We’ve got a fantastic squad and I’m excited about being able to compete at Everton and win plenty of silverware.”  Sandro also made reference to Blues Director of Football Steve Walsh and Chairman Bill Kenwright who were pivotal to the negotiations for his signing. “The biggest attraction is the confidence already shown in me by people at the club,” he added. “I’m really excited at having the chance to work with the manager, Ronald Koeman. He has shown a lot of faith in me and was very influential in my decision to come here, as were other people at the club – especially the Chairman, Bill Kenwright, and Steve Walsh.  “I’m bringing a lot of youthful enthusiasm and a real desire to improve and work hard. “One of the things I’ve always had is a good work ethic and a real desire and strength of character to do well. “My key strength is goalscoring. It’s always good to bring goals to a team and that’s what I’m hoping to do. My game is making runs off the ball, trying to find space, putting in a lot of effort and running hard. I think that’s an advantage in the Premier League.”

Everton complete Sandro Ramirez transfer as Ronald Koeman's rebuild continues apace
The Spanish forward will cost just £5.1m from Malaga
Sports Staff Monday 3 July 2017
The Independent Football
Everton have completed the signing of Spanish Under-21 international Sandro Ramirez.  The young forward arrives on a four-year deal after leaving Malaga. Sandro’s contract with Malaga contained a €6m (£5.1m) release clause, but it only became active on Monday July 3. While Everton were initially hoping Malaga might agree to a deal for the same price to be completed before that date, the Andalucians have held firm and Sandro was instead confirmed as a Toffee at 4pm. After leaving Barcelona on a free transfer a year ago, Sandro impressed on the Costa del Sol scoring 14 La Liga goals. Atletico Madrid met with the striker’s agent but after failing with their appeal against a transfer ban, saw the deal collapse. And Sandro has claimed that Everton are "the ideal club" for him right now. “I’m very happy, this is a big step in my career,” Sandro told evertontv. “I know I’m signing for a massive club in England. Everton is the ideal place for me, I’ve got the ideal manager who is going to keep giving me the confidence to improve my game.  “I cannot wait to wear the blue shirt in front of the Everton fans at Goodison Park. It’s a big jump in my career coming to the Premier League and for a club like Everton which is really on the up. They have got big plans and want to succeed and keep developing. I’m hoping I can get to know my teammates as soon as possible, and want to adapt to the football and the way of life in the city.  “Everton have made some big signings and we’re hoping we can put in a great season and hopefully then we can achieve that aim of getting in the Champions League. It will be a big season for us. “I was lucky enough to play with some of the best players in the world and managed to win the odd trophy but the important thing now is that I’m very happy to be signing for Everton. We’ve got a fantastic squad and I’m excited about being able to compete at Everton and win plenty of silverware.”

Everton follow up Sandro Ramirez transfer with club-record deal for Burnley defender Michael Keane
The Toffees have spent nearly £100m this summer with the Englishman's fee rising to £30m
Ed Malyon @eaamalyon Monday 3 July 2017
The Independent Football
Everton signed Sandro Ramirez on Monday and followed that up with a club-record deal for Burnley defender Michael Keane. The central defender cost as much as £30m, including bonuses, as the Goodison Park club continue their rebuild under Ronald Koeman. Koeman has been desperate to improve the quality of his squad at every position and Keane's signing is a statement of intent, with the former Manchester United defender a target for a number of Champions League clubs. Indeed, the player was bowled over by the prospect of a return to United but was not guaranteed game time and ultimately was swayed by Everton's firmer pursuit and promise of first-team football. The Toffees have been the most active Premier League team so far in this summer's transfer window, with Jordan Pickford signing for £30m and Davy Klaassen joining from Ajax for a little less. Sandro's £5.1m transfer and Keane's arrival will push Everton's outgoings to nearly £100m already this summer. Romelu Lukaku is still expected to leave the club, with Chelsea strong favourites to capture his signature. Ross Barkley is allowed to go too, but there is less interest in him and his primary suitors, Tottenham, have shown no interest in meeting Everton's current asking price for the young England midfielder.

Michael Keane on verge of Everton transfer after completing medical
Keane went to a facility in Newton-le-Willows for the first part of his medical before heading to Finch Farm for complete the remaining formalities
3 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Michael Keane is on the verge of joining Everton after completing his medical. The Burnley defender is set to join the Blues for a £25m fee and travelled to Merseyside earlier today to finalise the move. Keane went to a facility in Newton-le-Willows for the first part of his medical before heading to Finch Farm for complete the remaining formalities. Swansea City's Gylfi Sigurdsson and Everton's Idrissa Gueye battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Liberty Stadium
Sigurdsson pursuit requires patience The 24-year-old centre half will sign a long term deal with the Blues and the deal could end up being worth £31m to the Clarets once add-ons are triggered. Keane will become Everton's fourth senior signing of the summer following the arrivals of Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen and Sandro Ramirez. New striker Henry Onyekuru has been loaned to Anderlecht for next season after joining from EUS Kupen for £6.8m.

Everton sign Michael Keane in £25million deal as defender hails influence of Ronald Koeman
The 24-year-old defender has put pen to paper on a five year deal after passing a medical today and the deal could rise to £30m with add-ons
3 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton have confirmed the signing of Michael Keane from Burnley for £25m. The 24-year-old defender has put pen to paper on a five year deal after passing a medical today and the deal could rise to £30m with add-ons. Keane says Ronald Koeman was a major factor in his decision to join the Blues and believes the Dutchman can help him develop into a top class defender. He said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be at Everton, a fantastic football club with passionate fans and a great tradition and I can’t wait to come into training tomorrow to meet all the lads,” Keane said. “First and foremost, the manager was a big factor in me coming to the Club. He played in my position when he was a world-class player for a great Barcelona side and a great Dutch side and the style of football he likes to play will suit me, I believe. Sigurdsson pursuit requires patience  “I watched a lot of Everton last season and I believe I really suit how the team likes to play. I feel like this is a great place to come and continue my development as a player. “He’s convinced me that he can still improve me in certain areas of my game. I’m only 24 which, for a centre-half in the Premier League, is relatively young. I’ve still got a long way to go and I know this and hopefully under his guidance I’ll keep improving. The 24-year-old defender has put pen to paper on a five year deal after passing a medical today and the deal could rise to £30m with add-ons.  “You always want to play for a manager who believes in you. I wanted to come somewhere I was wanted by the staff, players and fans as well. I feel like Everton is the perfect match." Keane had attracted interest from Manchester United earlier in the window but says Koeman, Bill Kenwright and Steve Walsh convinced him Goodison was the place to be. “I’ve also got to say thanks to the Chairman Bill Kenwright - he’s been absolutely fantastic getting the deal through," Keane added. "I also spoke with Steve Walsh, who I knew from my time at Leicester four or five years ago, and they really convinced me that this was the place to come and that Everton is the perfect club for me.”

Ronald Koeman delighted Everton managed to beat off strong competition for Michael Keane
Manchester United were among the clubs who were interested in the England defender
3 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Ronald Koeman has revealed his delight that Everton were able to beat off the competition to land priority signing Michael Keane. The Blues have tonight confirmed the signing of the 24-year-old defender from Burnley for £25m. Keane has penned a five year contract at Goodison and the deal to bring him from Turf Moor could eventually rise to £30m. Manchester United were among the clubs who were interested in the England defender but Keane chose to become the latest member of the Everton revolution - and Koeman is thrilled. “Michael was high among the players we wanted to bring to Everton this summer and I'm delighted he is here at the club,” he said. "We knew there would be competition from other clubs but Michael believes in the ambition of Everton and what we want to do and this is the perfect moment for him to come. "I believe there is much more to come from Michael and that's what makes his signing really exciting for me - we will see his development as a player along with the progression overall within the club. "It's another really positive sign of the direction the club is moving in. "He's 24 years old, his best years are to come, he's an England international, too, and I couldn't be more pleased that he's now a Blue."

Sandro is a heavyweight signing at a flyweight price for Everton
The signing of Sandro Ramirez has created a buzz... here's why
Phil Kirkbride
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
To purposefully misquote the old boxing adage; there's the football business and then there's the strikers business. And like boxing's big punching heavyweights, the beautiful game's big time goal-scorers are the ones who really draw in the crowds. Everton already have one – their leading marksman Romelu Lukaku – but for how much longer is decidedly uncertain, yet yesterday afternoon the club confirmed the signing of a player they believe can share the limelight at Goodison. There may be more eloquent ways of describing the feeling coursing through Evertonian veins right now but few will have been able to resist the excitement he is generating. Everton have moved with almost disbelieving pace to wrap up statement signings for one of the best young goalkeepers in the country, for one of its finest young defenders and for the captain of Ajax – all within three days of the window opening - yet strikers get the pulse racing in a different way. Add into the mix the interest of Atletico Madrid, a transfer ban being upheld and the delay in the announcement of his capture and the intrigue over Sandro has only intensified. Strikers are the star men, the ones with the golden touch, the players who become heroes and whose names adorn more replica shirts than their team-mates. Time will tell on Sandro and whether he will ever hold such a privileged position in these parts - we've only seen flashes, highlights packages and the impressive statistics from his season at Malaga - but everywhere you look there are admiring glances being cast in Everton's direction. There's feeling that not only have the Blues got him in a steal of deal (£5.2m) but that he is the type of player who could be a game-changer for them. Sandro Ramirez in action for Spain at the European U21 Championships
Sandro scores for Spain Having come through at Barcelona, Sandro has serious pedigree and has been coveted by Spurs, Atletico - and if you believe the rumours - Real Madrid and so comes with the promise of offering thoroughbred class, but also with the sense a rottweiler streak lies within. It's the sort of combination that would sit very well in the stands at Goodison. Ultimately, the proof is in the pudding and judgements must be reserved for the weeks, months and seasons ahead as Sandro adapts to life in a new league but this looks like being a sweet deal for Everton. A heavyweight signing at a flyweight price.

Football transfer rumours: Everton to continue spree with Wayne Rooney?
You should’ve seen the booze, kebabs and vomit that went into today’s tell-all
Paul Doyle
The guardian  Tuesday 4 July 2017
We are given to believe that Premier League managers are becoming as impatient as Premier League fans, with Antonio Conte, Jürgen Klopp, Rafael Benítez, José Mourinho and Mauricio Pochettino among those already reported at some point this summer to be close to flouncing off in anger at their club’s failure to land all their transfer targets. We are in the first week of July. So far this impatience seems to be confined to transfer dealings but the way this unreasonableness is going, don’t be surprised to see Conte booing his own substitutions if Chelsea are trailing in the Community Shield or Sean Dyche waving a white hankie at himself if Burnley concede a late goal on the opening day of the season. As for Arsène Wenger, well, presumably he’s at Elstree Aerodome as we speak, taking flying lessons so that he can personally pilot a plane dragging a Sack the Board banner if Arsenal don’t get a big deal over the line soon. Granted, an announcement of the signing of Alexandre Lacazette from Lyon may be just hours away but these are fast-moving times and people who love Arsenal must be already fretting about missing out on the next targets: for example, why the heck is Riyad Mahrez still at Leicester? And is it really true, as reported today, that Arsenal are plotting a £70m double-swoop for Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho and Gelson Martins? If it is, why hasn’t it been done yet? Waah! Waaaaaaah! Meanwhile, Marc Bartra is said to the latest person whose absence from Manchester is causing Mourinho to fume, as the United manager added the name of the Borussia Dortmund defender to his wish list many hours ago. Pretty much the only Premier League manager not thought to be on the verge of an almighty strop at the moment is Ronald Koeman, who is understood to be satisfied by his current diet of being treated to a new player every other day. But there must still be scope for him to start stomping his feet at Everton’s inability to organise a coming home party for Wayne Rooney. After 13 years at Manchester United, the striker is said to be keen on a return to his boyhood club. Because once a blue, always a blue, and China’s very far away. Everton have real ambitions of gatecrashing the top four, at least, next season and it’s very doubtful that a club with such aspirations should be able to give a regular game to Rooney, so perhaps Koeman classes the striker/midfielder/defender in that curious “good to have around the place” category? The Mill can’t help thinking that Javier Hernández would be a better to have around most places at this stage and West Ham, for one, seem to agree, as they’re close to signing the Mexican striker for £13m. That’s peanuts for the Little Pea. Meanwhile at Chelsea, Conte is understood to be on the verge of calming down for a minute, as the club are poised to complete the capture of Alex Sandro from Juventus for a very large fee. The Mill would tell you how much but does not know yet and, besides, does it even matter any more? Ravel Morrison is close to agreeing a deal to join Birmingham City, one of the 68 clubs where he has had a loan spell in the past. Southampton are making a move for Caen’s 18-year-old striker Yann Karamoh, while Newcastle are on the tail of have just signed the Eibar defender Florian Lejeune. Swansea want Coventry’s midfielder George Thomas to believe they are hotter stuff than Leicester, Rangers or Newcastle. Finally, Paris Saint-Germain are intent on atoning for an embarrassing last season by signing one or all of Kylian Mbappé, Ousmane Dembélé and James Rodríguez. Monaco, meanwhile, want to start their rebuilding by buying Keita Baldé from Lazio, but the Senegalese is also wanted by – you guessed it – Everton. … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading the Guardian than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe our perspective matters – because it might well be your perspective, too. I appreciate there not being a paywall: it is more democratic for the media to be available for all and not a commodity to be purchased by a few. I’m happy to make a contribution so others with less means still have access to information.
Thomasine F-R. If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps to support it, our future would be much more secure.

Everton transfer rumours - Blues step up efforts to re-sign Wayne Rooney
A round-up of Everton transfer rumours and speculation from around the web
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Come on, Everton , give us some time to catch our breath! The Toffees aren't hanging about this year, the transfer window has been open just four days and the Steve Walsh has been busy, signing five players already. Michael Keane and Sandro Ramirez officially arrived at Goodison Park last night to join Davy Klaassen, Jordan Pickford and Henry Onyekuru joining the Blues to take Everton’s spend to over £90m. But Ronald Koeman isn't about to stop there, the Everton boss is already planning his next move - and the club are now pushing hard to re-sign Wayne Rooney from Manchester United, according to The Times. The Man United captain is said to be interested in a return to his boyhood club, where he would enjoy more regular football. Swansea City's Gylfi Sigurdsson and Everton's Idrissa Gueye battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Liberty Stadium One stumbling block with be Rooney's £250,000 per week wages, but a compromise could be reached as the two clubs look to strike a deal. Romelu Lukaku is also said to have been mentioned in the discussions..

Jamie Carragher on Everton summer signings - 'None of them would make the Liverpool team!'
Anfield legend pokes fun at Blues as spending spree continues
4 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has issued a tongue in cheek dig at the calibre of Everton's summer signings. The former Reds defender was responding to the news that the Blues have completed a £30million deal for Burnley's Michael Keane and a £5.2m swoop for Malaga's Sandro. Those signings take Everton's spending this summer to more than £90m, having already snapped up Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, Ajax captain Davy Klaassen and Nigeria striker Henry Onyekuru. However, Carragher insists there's no reason for Kopites to be concerned about their neighbours splashing the cash. Accompanied by a photo of a smiling Jurgen Klopp on holiday in Ibiza, Carragher tweeted: “When Everton sign 4/5 players but none of them would make the Liverpool team!” It has been re-tweeted more than 12,000 times. Naby Keita heading to Liverpool for £70million will be money well spent
Among those to respond was former Everton midfielder Peter Reid. He tweeted: “Keep off the ale”

New Everton signing Michael Keane arrives early for first day of training
Keane joined Blues last night in £25m fee
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Michael Keane ensured he was early for his first day of work at Everton . The Blues new signing arrived at Finch Farm at just after 8am after sealing his move from Burnley last night. Everton have paid £25m for the 24-year-old, with the deal potentially rising to £30m, and he signed a five year contract. Keane met a few of his new team-mates at the club’s training headquarters yesterday as he made his way in for the second part of his medical. But the England defender will meet the more of the squad today. Keane became Everton’s fifth signing of the summer and his arrival takes their spending to almost £100m in deals. Last night Keane said: “I always wanted it to be that way, so I could come in straightaway and meet and train with the lads. “I didn’t want to feel like I was joining halfway through [pre-season]. “It’s all got done and I can’t wait for Tuesday.”

Michael Keane reveals why he chose to move to Everton over Manchester United and Liverpool
The England international completed a £30million move to Goodison Park on Monday evening
Sports Staff Tuesday 4 July 2017
The Independent Football
Michael Keane has revealed Ronald Koeman was the main deciding factor in why he chose Everton over Manchester United and Liverpool. The north west duo were linked with a move for the former Burnley defender with United particularly keen before opting instead for Benfica's Victor Lindelof. The England international went on to complete a £30million move to Goodison Park on Monday evening and says the opportunity to work with Koeman was too good to turn down. "First and foremost, the manager was a big factor in me coming to the club," he told the Toffees' official website. "He played in my position when he was a world-class player for a great Barcelona side and a great Dutch side and the style of football he likes to play will suit me, I believe. "I watched a lot of Everton last season and I believe I really suit how the team likes to play. I feel like this is a great place to come and continue my development as a player. "He's convinced me that he can still improve me in certain areas of my game. I'm only 24 which, for a centre-half in the Premier League, is relatively young. I've still got a long way to go and I know this and hopefully under his guidance I'll keep improving. "You always want to play for a manager who believes in you. I wanted to come somewhere I was wanted by the staff, players and fans as well. I feel like Everton is the perfect match."

New Everton defender Michael Keane thanks Burnley for 'best years of my life'
Blues new £25m man issues classy farewell statement to former club
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
New Everton defender Michael Keane has issued a classy farewell to Burnley after his big-money move to Goodison Park . The 24-year-old completed his move from Turf Moor for a fee of £25m , which could rise to £30m, making him Everton’s fifth signing of the summer. The former Manchester United starlet spoke of his delight at joining the Blues and excitement at working with Ronald Koeman but still took the time to pay tribute to the role Burnley have played in his development. The Stockport-born centre back arrived at Turf Moor, initially on loan, in 2014 and went on to make 100 senior appearances for the Lancashire club, also winning his first senior England caps this year. On leaving for Everton, he issued a personal statement throughout the Clarets, thanking them for "the best years of his life". He said: “Firstly, what a tough decision it has been to leave this amazing football club. “I can honestly say I have had the best three years of my life here, on and off the pitch! “I have had a lot of special moments while playing for you, notably my two goals against Brighton and Middlesbrough in the Championship winning season. “Of course, we created history as a team last season by staying in the Premier League and by playing regularly it helped my dream come true of playing for England. “I will never be grateful enough for the work Sean Dyche, Ian Woan, Tony Loughlan and Billy Mercer have done with me on a daily basis to get me to this point in my career.  “The gaffer showed a lot of faith in me three years ago, when it could have been easy for me to stay at United and look for an opportunity there. “He convinced me to come to Burnley and develop under his guidance and I put that down as one of the best decisions I've ever made, so thanks gaffer! “I also want to say thanks to all the backroom staff, of which there are too many to name: strength and conditioning coaches, analysts, nutritionist, physios, chef, media team and Bumble! “As for my team mates, I can honestly say I've never enjoyed playing with a group of people more. “They have the never-say-die attitude and the talent to go with it. From day one they welcomed me into the group and I have made friends for life with them all and will miss seeing them every day. “Finally, the fans. You have been amazing with me and the team since day one through low times and the many successful times we have had together. “That support is what drives the team on and there are many games where we feel you helped push us over the line. “Even when we were struggling away from home last season you continued to travel to every game and sing your hearts out for us and we thankfully rewarded you with a win at Palace!  “Burnley Football Club will always have a special place in my heart and I wish you all the best for the upcoming season. I can't wait to play at Turf Moor again in March!
"Thanks for everything!
"UTC! (Up The Clarets!)

Would any of Everton's new signings make Liverpool's starting line-up?
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher questioned whether any of Everton's new signings would be first-choice across Stanley Park
Mark Critchley @mjcritchley
Tuesday 4 July 2017
The Independent Football
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher dismissed Everton’s summer transfer business on Monday, just hours after Ronald Koeman’s side had confirmed the signings of young Malaga striker Sandro Ramirez and Burnley centre-back Michael Keane. Everton have been the Premier League’s most proactive club regarding transfer business this summer, with the captures of Ramirez and Keane taking the club’s spending in this window up to at least £86m. Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, midfielder Davy Klaassen and striker Henry Onyekuru have also arrived at Goodison Park this summer, but Carragher does not believe any of the five would be a first-choice player at Anfield. “When Everton sign 4/5 players but none of them would make the Liverpool team,” he tweeted on Monday night alongside a bizarre picture of Jürgen Klopp wearing a parasol hat. Peter Reid, the former Everton midfielder, responded by tweeting: “Keep off the ale La.” Does Carragher have a point, though? We ran the rule over Everton’s four major signings and compared them to their opposite numbers across Stanley Park to see whether they would make Klopp's starting line-up come August.
Jordan Pickford vs Simon Mignolet
Pickford is highly thought-of at the moment after impressing last term for David Moyes’ doomed Sunderland. The 23-year-old is a marked improvement on Joel Robles and Maarten Stekelenburg, Ronald Koeman’s previous options between the sticks, and his switch to Goodison Park made him the third-most expensive goalkeeper of all time. Would he dislodge a fellow ex-Sunderland ‘keeper, Simon Mignolet, at Anfield? It is a tough one to call. While Mignolet has divided opinion among Liverpool supporters ever since his move from Wearside in 2013, he hardly put a foot wrong since regaining his place from Loris Karius during the mid-part of last season and earned Jürgen Klopp’s side vital points during the top-four run-in. Mignolet does not deserve to lose his automatic starting place to a young newcomer for a second season running but Pickford is a sound long-term investment and does not carry the same baggage as the Belgian. The Everton signing wins out, just.
Verdict: Jordan Pickford, just
Michael Keane vs Dejan Lovren
Keane’s stock greatly rose last season, with the former Manchester United youth product impressing as part of Sean Dyche’s limited but stubborn Burnley side. This form earned him an England debut in March and ultimately convinced Koeman, chairman Bill Kenwright and owner Farhad Moshiri to part with an initial £25m for Keane’s services. Questions, meanwhile, have been asked about the centre of Liverpool’s defence for years now. No player has established himself as a reliable, long-term option in the role since Carragher’s retirement in 2013. Of the current first-choice pairing, Dejan Lovren’s place is arguably in more jeopardy than Joel Matip’s. Is Keane a better defender than Lovren? This is the closest of all four calls and we may only know the answer by the end of the season. What we can say is that Dyche’s conservative approach at Turf Moor gave Keane maximum protection. Koeman will be slightly more adventurous, while Klopp’s methods demand a lot from his defence. Lovren may struggle in this regard at times but we have seen little evidence to suggest Keane would be much better. For now, better the devil you know.
Verdict: Dejan Lovren, just
Davy Klaassen vs Georginio Wijnaldum
Klaassen has been brought in to give Everton goals from midfield, which they will need in abundance if Romelu Lukaku and his 26-goal haul depart this summer as expected. Klaassen, a Dutch international, notched 14 and registered 10 assists in the Eredivise with Ajax last season, improving on his 13 goals and 8 assists from the previous campaign. The player most comparable to him Liverpool’s side is probably Georginio Wijnaldum, who posted similarly numbers during his eight years in Holland’s top-flight at Feyenoord and PSV Eindhoven. It was initially difficult to see where Wijnaldum would fit into Klopp’s thinking following his £23m move from Newcastle United, but he soon established himself as Anfield favourite. Klaassen could well become Everton’s own Wijnaldum; a hard-working central midfielder with license to roam forward and a penchant for scoring important goals. But would he be a starter at Liverpool? Probably not, especially if Klopp pulls off the signing of RB Leipzig’s Naby Keita.
Verdict: Georginio Wijnaldum
Sandro Ramirez vs Roberto Firmino
Sandro arrives at Everton on a four-year contract from Malaga, for a fee of just £5.3m. It is a cut-price deal for a 21-year-old La Masia graduate who scored 16 goals in 31 appearances last season, one whose potential led to interest from Atletico Madrid. He may not yet be ready to single-handedly replace Lukaku’s scoring output, but Everton will be hoping Sandro is capable of doing so in the years to come. Would all that be enough for him to move straight into Liverpool’s first team? Roberto Firmino is the closest thing Klopp has to an out-and-out striker and considering how integral he is to Liverpool’s style, Sandro’s chances would be slim. Firmino may be Klopp’s focal point but he offers so much more than that when on song, linking up brilliantly with those running off him. He could, perhaps, score a few more, but Liverpool’s style means goals are shared out fairly equally. Sandro’s development will be watched closely but for the moment, he simply would not displace Firmino.
Verdict: Roberto Firmino

Is Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher right about Everton's new signings?
We debate whether any of the Blues new boys would walk into the first team at Anfield
4 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
That rapscallion Jamie Carragher. He just couldn’t resist. Despite confessing to being on his best behaviour on social media all summer, Everton snapping up yet another new signing was enough for the Liverpool legend to poke his head above the parapet.  That said, the sight of Jurgen Klopp in Ibiza with an umbrella for a hat would have tempted just about anyone to pass comment. Carragher responded with a tweet declaring: “When Everton sign 4/5 players but none of them would make the Liverpool team!” Yes, it was a cheeky dig at the Blues, who have been flexing their new financial muscle by splashing out more than £90m in recent weeks. But is there an element of truth in Carragher’s quip? David Prentice – ‘No, there’s three out of the five by my reckoning’ Ragnar Klavan played in more than half of Liverpool’s Premier League matches last season – not altogether convincingly. After his latest sloppy display against Bournemouth in April, Jamie pointed out the deficiencies in his selection. “Problem for LFC is Lovren and Matip always missing games,” he tweeted. “Third choice Klavan then has to play more and eventually it shows.” The first time Joel Matip or Dejan Lovren picked up an injury – and it was just five games in when Lovren first dipped out last season – Michael Keane would walk into Liverpool’s defence. Klopp may then find it difficult to leave him out. Simon Mignolet, meanwhile, finally found some consistency after dropping a ball at Alfred N’Diaye’s feet in February. He’s first choice... for now. Jurgen Klopp craves a young, reliable keeper with the potential to get even better – hence his acquisition of Loris Karius. Jordan Pickford already looks a much better option, and is better with a ball at his feet than either.
That’s two out of the five.
Origi may not be first choice at Anfield – but he was involved in all but four Premier League games last season. And scored seven goals.
Sandro scored 14 in la Liga.
We rest that particular case.
That’s three out of the five by my reckoning.
Ian Doyle – ‘Yes, Carragher is right... at least for now’
First, a disclaimer.
There’s no doubting the quality of the players Everton have brought in. The Ajax captain, a Spain under-21 international schooled at Barcelona, a future England goalkeeper and centre-back, and a highly-rated Nigerian striker. All young, all hungry, all with (hopefully) their best years ahead of them. Given the exorbitant, inexorable market forces, the £90m the Blues have spent thus far on squad rebuilding represents great value, even if only two or three of the new boys succeed in the long term. However, you don’t become a title-challenging team overnight (well, unless you’re Leicester City). And while Liverpool will be hoping to give the Premier League a decent crack, Everton are aiming to nudge their way into the conversation among the top six. Their fresh faces are a stepping stone in that direction. Would Everton’s new signings be welcomed into the Liverpool squad? Most definitely. Would they have their chances in the first team? Without doubt. But are they, at present, of the standard to dislodge those who started regularly for the Reds last season? At this present time, you’d have to say no. An argument could be made for Michael Keane, although Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip formed a decent partnership when both available last season. Otherwise, the likes of Davy Klaassen, Sandro Ramirez and Jordan Pickford would have their opportunities but, at least on the evidence of their still young careers, not on a regular basis.
So, Carra is right. Sort of. At least for now.

Everton duo Brendan Galloway and Tyias Browning targeted by Sunderland
Black Cats are keen to take Blues duo on loan for this season as they eye Aiden McGeady deal
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
Everton defenders Brendan Galloway and Tyias Browning are loan targets for Sunderland. And the Black Cats remain in the hunt to sign Aiden McGeady on a permanent deal. Galloway, 21, spent a season to forget on loan at West Brom last term, making only five appearances for the Baggies. And new Sunderland boss Simon Grayson is keen on taking him on loan for the 2017-18 campaign as he plots an immediate return to the Premier League. New Everton defender Michael Keane thanks Burnley for 'best years of my life'
The ECHO understands no deal has been struck yet, however. Browning, meanwhile, played for Grayson at Preston North End last season and made eight appearances in a loan spell interrupted by injury. But Grayson is keen on being reunited with the 23-year-old is also looking for a season-long loan deal. McGeady is also a target for Middlesbrough but Sunderland are still hoping to land the Republic of Ireland star.

Ex-Everton striker Arouna Kone joins Turkish club Sivasspor
Kone was released at the end of June when contract expired
4 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Arouna Kone has signed for Turkish side Sivasspor, the club have announced. Kone was released by Everton after his contract expired at the end of last month.  The 33-year-old had been keen to stay in the Premier League, but has today agreed a two-year deal with Sivasspor who have been promoted to Turkey’s top flight. Kone was a £6m signing for Roberto Martinez in the summer of 2013 and signed a three year deal. Mid-way through the 2015-16 campaign, Kone triggered a 12 month extension. However, Martinez’s sacking placed his Everton future in doubt as Ronald Koeman went about making sweeping changes. Swansea City's Gylfi Sigurdsson and Everton's Idrissa Gueye battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Liberty Stadium
Sigurdsson pursuit requires patience
 Kone came close to joining Crystal Palace on deadline day in January but the move collapsed late on. The Ivorian only made nine appearances under Koeman and was not offered fresh terms at the end of the season.

Everton concept kits for farewell season at Goodison Park
Fan comes up with designs based on Archibald Leitch-inspired playing strips
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
A fan who creates Everton concept kits in his free time has created two designs for the Blues farewell season at Goodison Park. Everton celebrate their 125th anniversary at their long-time home this year but are scheduled to move to a new waterfront stadium by the banks of the River Mersey at Bramley Moore Dock in 2021. If the project is completed on time – organisers for the city of Liverpool's 2022 Commonwealth Games bid expect the Blues to have already have been playing at their new ground for a year if they stage the multi-sport event – then the 2020/21 season will be Everton's final campaign at Goodison. To mark the forthcoming event, Kevin Macken, who Tweets under the handle @EFCKitDesigns, has come up with two special playing strips. The supporter, from Colorado – home state of architect Dan Meis who is designing Everton's new stadium – has been inspired by the iconic criss-crossed steel balustrades on the Bullens Road which were the signature feature of Archibald Leitch.
The brick house that Meis built  The royal blue and white home kit features a horizontal version of Leitch's cladding while the away shirt – based on Everton's 1881/82 'Black Watch' colours – has the same print used diagonally in scarlet against a black background. Kevin has also come up with several other concept designs in recent months.
 These include one he calls 'Gray-dient' – an away kit that has several shades of grey in a v-shape across the shirt; Rupert's Tower – which has multiple small prints of the building which features on Everton's crest against a light background and a similar green number called 'Minty Fresh.'

What does Michael Keane's arrival mean for Phil Jagielka's Everton future?
Blues spalsh £25m on Keane as skipper reaches landmark anniversary
4 JUL 2017  Liverpool Echo
As Michael Keane was driven into Finch Farm to undergo the second part of his medical on Monday afternoon, he passed Phil Jagielka heading the opposite way. The cars stopped and the pair enjoyed a brief chat before going off in different directions. They met up again this morning as Keane’s first day on the job coincided with the 10th anniversary of Jagielka’s arrival at the club. Keane signed a five year contract is the future of Everton’s defence. Jagielka has only 12 months remaining and his future is far less certain. Ronald Koeman has spoken of the importance of keeping the club captain around as they head into a season where success and failure could be defined by the extent of their strength in depth. The perceived wisdom is that, as it stands, Koeman will partner Keane with Ashley Williams on August 12 against Stoke City. Things change, of course - form, fitness, formations - and Jagielka is as good a back-up centre-half as you’re likely to find in the league. Experienced, battle-hardened and coming off a season he finished strongly - and in the starting XI - the skipper may confident of forcing his way deeper into Koeman’s plans. And though Williams would have played in every league game last season, but for a late arrival and a one game ban, will Koeman expect the same return from the 32-year-old (33 in August) with Europa League and domestic cup matches thrown in as well next term? Jagielka on fears over his Everton future and facing challenge of new arrivals
If not, then who better than Jagielka to come in for him? There’s a compelling case for him to stay and it would be a brave decision to leave Everton as they become upwardly mobile under Koeman. But, equally, nobody could begrudge him if he went elsewhere in search of what all players want: regular first-team football. A return to boyhood club Sheffield United may prove too difficult for the Championship to budget for but Jagielka will not be short of admirers.  “I’ve heard the rumours myself, but as of yet there’s nothing in that,” he said last month. Asked about his Everton future in May, Jagielka offered: “It is not really about me and what I hope.” Yet after a decade of service he has earned the right for the ball to be in his court. Everton want him around - they’d miss his leadership if he wasn’t - but it’s from where he will be able to exercise that this season, is the question.
Alongside Keane? Or from a watching brief?

How Everton's new look team might line-up next season
We ponder some of the personnel and formations Koeman may consider
4 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Ronald Koeman is going to need them in the new season, and thankfully it appears he'll have them. What's more - Everton aren't done yet in the transfer market. Not by a long way. But with all these new faces arriving, it's fun to speculate about how Ronald Koeman's XI may look when he has everyone fit? Where will Davy Klaassen be deployed? How many holding midfielders will come into play? What about the defence - will it be Michael Keane and Ashley Williams? Or will the skipper keep his place? And up front - if Romelu Lukaku were to stay, would Everton have strikers as exciting addition Sandro comes into the equation? It will be interesting to see. Assuming that everyone is fit (for the sake of the piece we're wishing Seamus Coleman and Yanick Bolasie extra speedy recoveries) we've looked at some possible line-ups.
Other potential line-ups
Coleman, Williams, Keane, Baines,
Gueye, Schneiderlin,
Sandro, Klaassen, Bolasie,
Gueye Schneiderlin Sandro Klaassen Bolasie Lukaku
Coleman, Williams, Keane, Baines,
Gueye, Schneiderlin, Klaassen,
Sandro, Lukaku, Bolasie/Barkley

'A new Everton is threatening to emerge' - how Blues transfer spending is viewed
The National Press have been reacting to Goodison Park spending spree
By Chris Beesley
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Not everyone has been as derisive about Everton’s spending spree as Jamie Carragher and their recent preponderance of the transfer market has prompted not one but two major comment pieces in UK national broadsheets over the past 24 hours.   Even before the double arrival of the acquisitions of Sandro Ramirez and Michael Keane was announced on Monday, another boyhood Blue turned Red in the shape of Robbie Fowler had been more magnanimous in his assessment of the recruitment activity going on at Finch Farm.  Paul Joyce, now of the Times, has been a major player among the Merseyside football Press Pack for over two decades, and can feel a change in the tide at Goodison Park.
He writes: “Peek beyond the headline figure, one which seemingly spirals by the week as another high-profile recruit arrives, and it is not just what Everton are doing in the transfer market which captures the attention but how they are doing it.  “This is a club whose supporters have grown accustomed to seeing business completed moments before the window closes rather than delivering many targets before it had even opened. Deadline day will not quite be the same without the mad-cap rush to beat the clock.”
Joyce understandably credits the spending spree on the increased financial muscle provided by Farhad Moshiri’s arrival but believes the preponderance of acquisitions is a group effort.
He says: “His [Moshiri’s] finance has proved transformational but the test is translating it on to the pitch. Yet in becoming relevant again Everton are benefiting from a collision of new money and increased ambition, transfer nous and continuity.
“Director of football, Steve Walsh, is considered to possess an eye for a player and manager Ronald Koeman boasts a certain mystique for prospective targets as well as authority having retreated to Portugal over the summer, while chairman Bill Kenwright proceeded with delivering on a clear vision designed to harness potential and, in other cases, proven ability.”
Some doubters have claimed that Everton are merely spending the ‘Romelu Lukaku money’ before selling off their most valuable asset but Joyce believes the future of this single individual, no matter how prolific he has been in recent seasons, is irrelevant when looking at the overall picture of the direction the club is moving in.  He concludes: “Whether or not Romelu Lukaku’s £100 million departure offsets the current outlay misses the point. A new Everton is threatening to emerge as quickly as the plans for a shimmering new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock. Expect more expensive times to follow.”
Meanwhile in the Guardian, Paul Wilson has been impressed with Everton’s sprint out of the blocks – regardless of whether they recoup their outlay through the potential sale of Lukaku.
He writes: “To an extent Everton have been rebuilding in the knowledge that they will have to react and reshape once their leading scorer departs, and to an extent they have been spending in the expectation of a large fee being received before the end of the window.
“They will probably need to recruit again once Lukaku goes. Koeman is still an admirer of Gylfi Sigurdsson and there are even reports of a move for Olivier Giroud, though regardless of what happens later in the summer it is never a bad idea to have your principal targets identified early and to bring them in with a minimum of fuss in time to take part in a full pre-season.
“Were there a prize for this sort of thing, Everton would have just put themselves in pole position, with other clubs still dithering and debating at the back of the grid.”
Wilson picks up on how incoming signings like Sandro are joining the Blues and aiming to “win plenty of trophies” even though he was born in July 1995, two months after the FA Cup final when Everton secured the last major piece of silverware.  He observes: “Any player is entitled to be optimistic upon joining a new club for a considerable fee, and there is perhaps no harm in being unrealistically so, but were this an Alfred Hitchcock film the menacing music would now be building to a crescendo.
“Were it a Vic and Bob show there would be tumbleweed rolling across the set.
“Players do not generally move to Everton to win “plenty of silverware”.
“That has not been the case since the mid-80s, and even then the revival under Howard Kendall was a relatively short-lived affair, bookended by underachievement and far less distinguished managers.”
Wilson ponders how Ronald Koeman’s side might deal with the demands of competing both at home and abroad but reckons the Blues are still making strides in their approach.
He says: “It is unlikely that Everton would be able to prosper on two fronts, and it will be interesting to see how Koeman approaches the European competition.  “Yet for now, before a ball has been kicked, Everton followers can at least take satisfaction in their club doing something right.  “They should be a tougher proposition this season, and with their fighting spirit and the ability to make Goodison a difficult place to visit, they could prove a surprise package in 2017-18.”

Everton closing in on another transfer record
Blues could have a record number of new faces in an opening day line-up
By David Prentice
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
They were tagged - with more than a hint of irony - the magnificent seven.
And while only one became truly magnificent, five of them made their Everton debuts on the opening day of the 1981/82 season.  Howard Kendall had taken a new broom to Gordon Lee’s failing squad soon after he arrived as Everton manager in the summer of 1981.
He quickly snapped up seven new faces.
Goalkeepers Neville Southall and Jim Arnold arrived, as did strikers Mick Ferguson and Alan Biley, centre-back Mike Walsh, and midfielders Alan Ainscow and Mickey Thomas.
They hit the ground running with Biley and Ainscow both on target in a 3-1 win over Birmingham City.
Five of the seven quickly moved on, while the most successful - and enduring of them all - the legendary Southall, had to wait until October for his bow.
Neville Southall
But 36 years later Everton are just one more signing away from matching that debut day record.
Only Everton’s first ever match in the Football League against Accrington in 1888 has seen more league debutants.  But with Jordan Pickford, Michael Keane, Davy Klaassen and Sandro all likely to be involved against Stoke City on August 12, just one more addition to the squad would see that five debuts record equalled.
Unless it was Wayne Rooney.
Wayne Rooney runs on to the pitch for the Duncan Ferguson Testimonial match in August 2015
The Manchester United record scorer has, of course, already played for the Toffees, scoring 17 goals in his 77 appearances before exiting up the East Lancs Road.
Interestingly, the last time Everton had as many as four League debutants was in Rooney’s debut match against Tottenham in 2002.   Richard Wright, Li Tie and Rodrigo all joined Rooney in making their Royal Blue bow that day.

Sunderland to unveil Everton duo today – with Aiden McGeady to follow
July 5 2017 Sunderland Echo
Simon Grayson has landed his first signings with Tyias Browning and Brendan Galloway to be unveiled today and Aiden McGeady set to follow from Everton. Grayson and chief executive Martin Bain have been working tirelessly to secure a breakthrough and have succeeded with the imminent arrival of the Everton trio.  Defenders Browning and Galloway, who underwent medicals yesterday, arrive on season-long loan deals.  Sunderland are in advanced discussions with McGeady and barring any last minute hitches the permanent deal is expected to be concluded within 24 hours.  McGeady was free to leave Goodison Park for a fee in the region of £2million, with Sunderland beating Preston and Middlesbrough to his signature.  The winger spent last year on loan at Preston under Grayson, who made the 90-capped Republic of Ireland winger – who scored eight goals in 35 games – his No.1 target.  The 31-year-old, who started his career at Celtic, joined Everton from Spartak Moscow in January 2014 before loan spells at Sheffield Wednesday and Preston.  McGeady will provide the creative spark, with Grayson also improving his defensive options with the captures of Browning and Galloway.  Right-back Browning, also comfortable at centre back, played full-back for the majority of his eight-game loan spell at Preston under Grayson last season.  Having broken into the Everton team in 2014, he suffered a serious knee cartilage injury which sidelined him for nine months before his move to Preston for regular football.
The 23-year-old, capped at England at U17, U19 and U20 level, has made nine first-team appearances for the Toffees and has also spent time on loan at Wigan Athletic.  England Under-21 international Galloway spent time on loan at West Bromwich Albion last season but only made five appearances in an unsuccessful spell.  The pacy 21-year-old left-back, who can also play in central defence, started his career as a trainee at MK Dons before joining Everton.  Grayson says it is vital to bring in the right calibre of player, up for the challenge of helping the club win promotion back to the Premier League.
“It’s all about getting the right types into this club. There have been too many players in the past that have been here for the trappings of it all and the money,” said Grayson.
“We are working hard behind the scenes to secure a few deals and hopefully we are getting very close to some.  “It is relentless in the Championship. You have to have a real strong mentality, a real desire, a fantastic team ethic and spirit to get you through difficult stages and that is what I have tried to create at all clubs I have been at and this is going to be no different. “  Meanwhile, Sunderland and Middlesbrough are both monitoring ex-England goalkeeper Rob Green’s position at Leeds United.
Sunderland sold Jordan Pickford to Everton but still have Vito Mannone and Mika on the books.
Mannone’s future remains up in the air and Grayson may find himself needing to strengthen the goalkeeping department.

Wayne Rooney and Everton: The full story so far
A wrap up of everything we've published about Rooney and his possible Everton return
By David Prentice
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Never mind "Remember the name", Evertonians have found it impossible to ignore Wayne Rooney this summer.  The Manchester United captain has been the subject of rumour, counter-rumour and reports galore about the possibility of him returning to his first club.  And now that he has been withdrawn from United's squad to tour the USA, the reports have intensified.  Everton have made no official comment but reports say their former player has agreed a £250,000-a-week two-year deal and could complete a move by the end of this week.  We have written plenty about the prospect of Rooney returning to Goodison - and everyone has had their say from Ronald Koeman to Phil Jagielka, from David Moyes to Kevin Sheedy.  Here's a round up of everything we have published so far. There's sure to be more to follow.  Manchester United’s 253-goal all-time leading scorer left Goodison 13 years ago after 77 appearances and 17 goals for the club he supported as a child. His return is now looking more and more likely.

Everton transfer rumours - Blues set for massive double striker deal?
A round-up of EFC transfer rumours and speculation from around the web
By Joe Rimmer
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton fans have had plenty of reasons to get excited this summer.
The Blues have smashed their transfer record once, and got close to that number a couple of times since.  They have signed England's best young goalkeeper, one of the country's outstanding centre-backs, Ajax's free-scoring captain and a bargain young striker from Spain.
In total, the Blues have spent just over £90m - but they aren't about to stop there.
Wayne Rooney's potential return to Everton is starting to seem more realistic by the day, with national newspapers reporting that the 31-year-old is set for a return to his boyhood club by the end of the week.  And if that's not all, The Times reports that Everton will be in the running when Olivier Giroud leaves Arsenal after Alexandre Lacazette signs for the Gunners.
Giroud is expected to leave the Gunners after dropping down the pecking order at the Emirates.
Ronald Koeman is still on the lookout for more recruits despite this summer's spend, with Romelu Lukaku's future still unclear.
Wayne Rooney will meet Ronald Koeman this week as he prepares to leave Manchester United for Everton
It is understood that United are willing to waive a transfer fee, while Everton are capable of offering Rooney a deal of £150,000 a week
By  Ben Burrows
Wayne Rooney is set to meet Ronald Koeman this week as he prepares to leave Manchester United and return to boyhood club Everton.  As exclusively first revealed by The Independent in March, despite firm interest from elsewhere, Rooney’s first choice has always been to return to the Toffees whom he left for Old Trafford in 2004 as an 18-year-old.  It is understood that United are willing to waive a transfer fee, while Everton are capable of offering Rooney a deal of £150,000 a week with the player set to meet manager Koeman this week.
How Manchester United could line up next season
The England captain fell out of favour under Jose Mourinho at United this season before losing his place in Gareth Southgate’s international squad as well prompting him to assess his options this summer.
United drop major hint that Rooney is on his way out of club
United would have been willing to let Rooney go to the Chinese Super League at the end of February but, as reported by The Independent at the time, the 31-year-old still felt he had more to offer at Premier League level and was also determined to ensure he was in the England team for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.  That would have been almost impossible, had he made the move to China, and it is also understood Rooney’s representatives were put off by the standard of football there.  The Independent has since learned that a prospective offer from Everton was also greatly playing on the player’s mind, and that the Merseyside club have been investigating a move “for a few months”.  Everton’s offer marks a considerable paycut given Rooney currently earns around double, but it is believed he is willing to accept the offer such is the pull of his former club.  Rooney will join Michael Keane, Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen, Sandro Ramirez and Henry Onyekuru as part of an extensive summer recruitment drive on the blue half of Merseyside

Former Claret Martin Dobson backs Michael Keane to be a hit at Everton
By Tyrone Marshall
July 7 2017 Lancashire Post
FORMER Burnley and Everton midfielder Martin Dobson believes Michael Keane made 'great strides' during his Clarets career after completing his record move to Goodison Park.
Keane followed in the footsteps of Dobson on Monday as he swapped Turf Moor for Merseyside in a club record £30million deal.  Dobson was a British transfer record when he moved for £300,000 in August 1974, going on to play 230 games for Everton, and he has backed Keane to enjoy plenty of success with the Toffees after the 24-year-old signing a five-year deal.   But Dobson, who returned to Burnley from Goodison in 1979, believes the decision to leave a club where he has developed so much since arriving in 2014 will have been a difficult one for Keane.  "His development at Burnley has been just fantastic. It was a great decision from Sean to sign him permanently and he's made great strides over the last two or three years," said Dobson, who made 494 appearances for Burnley.  "He's got into the England squad and won his first caps. Last time I saw him was at Everton when Burnley came over (in April) and he looked very comfortable in those surroundings.  "I've seen a lot of games at the Turf during the last two or three years and he has looked very, very mature. He's taken his chance really well.
"He's been part of a lot of success at the club as well and winning a lot of games. There was the disappointment of relegation but to go up as champions the year after was an amazing achievement, there was a real team work and togetherness of that squad and the players all progressed together.
"It must have difficult for Michael to make that decision to leave because of the success he's had and the maturity and development he's had at Turf Moor over the last two or three years.
"He moves on to the next part of his career now and I'll be delighted to see him at Goodison."
Keane joins a club who appear to be on the up and is the sixth new recruit at Everton already this summer.  Three of those have cost more than £20million, with Jordan Pickford arriving from Sunderland and Davy Klaasen from Ajax, and Dobson believes Keane will fit in well at Goodison and thrive under Ronald Koeman.  "It's a new regime at Everton with a manager who's been there for 12 months and has played at the top level as well," Dobson said. "His (Koeman's) work ethic is fantastic, just like Sean's, they both expect a lot and demand a lot from their players and they want to be successful.
"Keane is going to be part of the revolution at Everton, they've brought a lot of players in over the summer.  "I was speaking to a few Evertonians when his name was mentioned and they were very positive about him, they had seen him play and knew how good he was. He will get a great welcome at the club and I'm sure he'll make a big contribution."  Keane won two England caps as a Claret in March and Dobson, who was the last outfield Burnley player to win international recognition for the Three Lions before Keane, thinks he can add to that tally.  "I think he's certainly in the manager's mind, especially with Gareth having been Under-21 manager while Michael was playing for that age group," he said.  "Now he's full England manager and Gareth has given him his debut as well in a full international squad.  "It depends on performing well at Goodison. It's a wonderful football club, with 40,000 people in every week and the intensity is great, and the fact he's had experience of playing top level football for Burnley and at international level will hold him in good stead as well."

Manchester United will have to pay half of Wayne Rooney's wages for Everton loan to go ahead
Jose Mourinho's men are in talks with the Blues over a deal to take the England skipper back to Goodison Park.
By David McDonnell
5 JUL 2017 Daily Record
Wayne Rooney's return to Everton hinges on Manchester United agreeing to fork out half of his bumper wage packet.   United will have to pay 50 per cent of half of Rooney 's £250,000-a-week wages for the move to go ahead.  Jose Mourinho's men are in talks with the Blues over a deal to take the England skipper back to Goodison Park.   The Reds are keen to offload Rooney on a permanent deal, but a loan deal is the likeliest option.   Rooney's agent, Paul Stretford, is in talks over the proposed switch, although there are several hurdles to clear before any deal is finalised.   With his future unclear, Rooney is set to be omitted from United's pre-season tour of the US, with Jose Mourinho and his squad leaving for Los Angeles on Sunday.  Meanwhile, Everton remain interested in Olivier Giroud with the Arsenal striker a £20million target.   Koeman's pursuit of the strike duo could pave the way for Romelu Lukaku's exit from Goodison this summer.

Everton hopeful on Wayne Rooney deal as talks progress
Blues working hard to seal the 31-year-old's Goodison return
By Phil Kirkbride
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are making progress on a sensational deal to bring Wayne Rooney back to Goodison.
The Blues have made no secret of their desire to land the 31-year-old this summer but looked like missing out as big money offers from China, and interest from America, turned the forward’s head.
But Everton have renewed belief that they can entice Rooney back to his boyhood club with both a permanent move and a loan deal being discussed by the club’s power brokers.
Significant hurdles are still to be overcome before Rooney’s Everton return can happen but it is understood that high level talks over the next few days will make or break the Blues’ hopes.
But there is growing confidence that Rooney - who left the club in 2004 for Manchester United - will become the latest arrival in a remarkable summer of recruitment.
Wayne Rooney runs on to the pitch for the Duncan Ferguson Testimonial match in August 2015
Rooney reportedly earns in the region £250,000 a week - double the highest paid earner at Goodison - but it is claimed that Everton would offer £150,000 a week for England’s all-time leading scorer.
United are said to be willing to rip up the final two years of Rooney’s contract and allow him to leave Old Trafford on a free transfer.   Jose Mourinho’s squad fly to Los Angeles on Sunday to begin their US Tour where they have friendly games against LA Galaxy, Real Salt Lake, Manchester City and Real Madrid and Rooney is scheduled to be part of the travelling party.   But if Everton are able to strike a deal then Rooney will miss the trip Stateside and seal a headline grabbing return to Goodison.

Everton legend Kevin Sheedy departs coaching role at Blues
The Toffees hero has called time on successful 11 year stint as a coach
By Greg O’KeeffeChris Beesley
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton legend Kevin Sheedy has left his coaching position at the Blues.
One of the club's greatest players of all-time , the 57-year-old has played a key role in the Toffees academy over the last decade.   Sheedy has been credited with overseeing the development of a string of exciting homegrown talents such as Tom Davies, Ross Barkley and JonJoe Kenny.
Everton coach Kevin Sheedy talks to his players before a game
The ECHO understands that Finch Farm staff have already been informed about the exit of a much-admired figure.
The reasons for his departure are currently unknown.
The Republic of Ireland international winger played 369 times for Everton , scored 97 goals and won two League Championships plus the European Cup-Winners' Cup – netting the last goal in the 3-1 victory over Rapid Vienna in the 1985 Rotterdam final.  Sheedy returned to the Blues in a youth coaching role in 2006 and took charge of different age groups with his most recent role guiding the Under-18s team.
He steered his teams to several honours including Premier Academy League in 2014 and the prestigious Dallas Cup in 2016 .  Sheedy who qualified for Ireland through his father who hailed from County Clare, also battled back from bowel cancer after being diagnosed in 2012 and he has spoken extensively about the importance of early detection of the disease.

Wayne Rooney will be an Everton player again next season - but with his glory days long gone how much use will he be?
Rooney must sense that now, approaching his 32nd birthday, he has lost his footing on the carousel of English football
By Jack Pitt-Brooke
July 7 2017 Independent
The Premier League in 2017 is many things but it is not a respecter of reputations. It is not romantic, not sentimental and it moves faster than anyone realises.   Wayne Rooney must know this. He is an unambiguous legend of the Premier League, having won it five times during his 13 years at Manchester United. Only 10 players, all of them from United, have won it more than him.   And yet Rooney must also sense that now, approaching his 32nd birthday, he has lost his footing on the carousel of English football.   The story of Rooney’s brilliant career has been one not just of the most gifted English footballer since Paul Gascoigne but also of continual selfless reinvention for the service of his teams. The bullish Rooney of Everton and Euro 2004 was very different from the player who dovetailed with Cristiano Ronaldo for three consecutive titles and the 2008 European Cup, again different from the deadly goal-scorer and leader in the post-Ronaldo years.
And yet the sad reality of the last four years, since Sir Alex Ferguson turned against him in 2013 if not before, is that the final reinvention has been a bridge too far for Rooney. Some players change their game to make up for the diminishing of their physical power. Rooney’s old United team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo has made himself the most important number nine in the world. Paul Scholes, also of United, found a way to stay effective even as his engine started to splutter, so much so that Ferguson called him out of retirement.   But Rooney has missed this final step. The experiment to turn him into a midfielder, driven by Louis van Gaal and Roy Hodgson, two managers with 70 years of combined experience, was a failure. Rooney made little impact there for Van Gaal’s United and was part of the problem, not the solution, for England at Euro 2016.
Jose Mourinho showed up at Old Trafford last year knowing he had to gradually phase Rooney out and promised that he would never play him in midfield either. But even then Mourinho did not know quite what to do with Rooney. He is not sharp enough in the box to play as a number nine any more but nor could he play with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, as the pairing was too slow. But then Mourinho did not want him in his high-energy physical midfield either.
Door still open for Rooney but Southgate says he must play regularly
By the end of the season, with Mourinho focusing on the Europa League, Rooney was increasingly part of Mourinho’s Premier League B Team. And he never looked like he could cut it. His displays in the big away defeats at Arsenal and then Tottenham in early May were those of a player whose time at the top end of the top flight is up. At the Emirates Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain tore through him just like Rooney used to do to 30-something opponents back in an Everton shirt.   That is what Rooney will be wearing again next season. He could have taken far more money and a far lower standard in the Chinese Super League but he will be staying in England and should be applauded for that. But it is impossible not to wonder how much use he will be Ronald Koeman’s Everton next season.
Everton’s success last year was built on the supreme physical power of Romelu Lukaku up front and if Lukaku goes to Chelsea, there is no way that Rooney will be able to replace that. Sandro Ramirez, signed from under the noses of the transfer-banned Atletico Madrid, will surely lead the line if Lukaku leaves. Rooney could conceivably partner Sandro but pragmatic Koeman is likelier to prefer strong midfield support, from Tom Davies, Davy Klaassen and, if he stays, Ross Barkley. Then they have Yannick Bolasie, Kevin Mirallas and Ademola Lookman to play on the wings.  So it certainly remains to be seen what Koeman will do with Rooney on the pitch. Of course he has a Europa League campaign to run as well and in Rooney has a man who has won one Champions League final and lost two others, even before this year’s Europa League final, giving him an unmatchable experience in European football. If Koeman wants to turn Everton into a winning team again, having someone who has won the lot will help immensely. It is not a squad stuffed with winners, even with Klaassen’s three Dutch titles at Ajax.  But on the pitch at Goodison Park, in the Premier League, against top opponents? Where Rooney made his name 15 years ago, at the age of 16, playing for David Moyes? Those days are over, no matter how helpful or important his simple presence might be.

Everton sign teenage striker Boris Mathis from Metz
Mathis to join Blues' under-23s squad
By Phil Kirkbride
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton have confirmed the signing of teenage striker Boris Mathis.
The 19-year-old joins the Blues after leaving Metz earlier this summer and will be part of the under-23s squad.  Mathis, who came through at Lyon, has signed a two-year contract at Goodison and comes to the club with Ligue 1 experience.
He said: “I am very happy and honoured to sign for Everton,” he said.
“It is a great club and I have always liked English football and the Premier League.
“I have followed Everton from France.
“The club has some great players and I’m very excited to become part of it.
“My first impressions have been very good. I like the movement and the intensity of the players. Everyone has also been very welcoming to me as well, which has been nice.   “David Unsworth is a very good coach. Of course, he played in the Premier League and I can already see how good he is.”
Everton have already added Dutch defender Nathangelo Markelo.

How 'football-mad' Sandro Ramirez will repay Everton's faith
"For six million euros in this market, hombre, you don't get many players like Sandro..."
By Paul Gorst
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton 's £5.2m fee for "football-mad" Sandro Ramirez will prove to be money well spent , according to the man who discovered his talent.  The Blues confirmed the signing of the Spain Under-21 striker on Monday from Malaga as they wrapped up a deal for their fifth signing of a big-spending summer.
Sandro, who came through the youth ranks at Barcelona, starred for Malaga last term, scoring 14 goals and claiming three assists for a side that finished 11th in La Liga.  Jordi Gris is the Barcelona scout who first spotted Sandro playing for Las Palmas' youth team, and in a transfer window that seen bloated transfer fees rise to eye-watering levels, the Spanish talent-spotter thinks the Blues have unearthed a true bargain.  "For six million euros in this market, hombre, you don't get many players like Sandro," Gris told Sky Sports.  "Malaga gave him confidence and trust and it paid off.  "Everyone was surprised by how he could strike a ball but this is a guy who trains hard, who wants to improve and who is football-mad.
"You can see that he was made to be a professional. If you make him an important player from the start, he will repay you."   The livewire Sandro was part of the Spanish Under-21 side that was beaten by Germany in the European Championship final in Poland last week, and Gris believes the forward's ability is tailor-made to thrive in English football's top flight.  He added: "The speed and the end-to-end nature of the Premier League will suit him.
"It will leave him more spaces to take advantage of. He's always been very clever at opening up spaces for his team-mates. I saw that when he was a boy and you could see it again recently with Spain's U21s.
"If you watch him in interviews you can see that he is a very humble guy.
"He's quite shy and he doesn't like speaking much, but he's a good person and a talented player. I think Everton have signed a great striker who still has lots of room to grow."
Sandro signed on Monday alongside the £25m capture of Michael Keane to take the Blues' summer spending up past the £90m mark already.  The pair joined Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen and Henry Oyekruru. 

Everton transfers: Brendan Galloway joins Sunderland
Blues defender heads to the North East in season-long loan
By Chris Beesley
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton defender Brendan Galloway has joined Sunderland on a season-long loan for the 2017/18 campaign.  Seen primarily as a centre-back when arriving at Goodison Park in August 2014, after making his Blues debut at left-back against West Ham United on May 16, 2015, Galloway burst onto the first team picture during the first half of the 2015/16 season, ably deputising for the injured Leighton Baines .
He played 19 matches that year – including 15 in the Premier League but despite penning a new deal in December 2015 that contracted him to Everton until 2020, after Baines’ return to fitness he struggled for game time.  Galloway was loaned out to Premier League rivals West Bromwich Albion last season by incoming Blues manager Ronald Koeman but the move proved hugely disappointing with Baggies boss Tony Pulis restricting him to just three Premier League outings (five in all competitions) but refusing to send him back to Goodison. Although he was born in Harare, Zimbabwe, Galloway moved to the United Kingdom when he was six years old and he has represented England at Under-17s, U18s, U19s and U21 level.

How will Everton look without Romelu Lukaku?
Phil Kirkbride on why Rooney, Sandro and others may be a sign of a change
By Phil Kirkbride
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
A picture is beginning to emerge of how Everton may look in a time without Romelu Lukaku.
But instead of peering nervously from behind the sofa, Blues fans are embracing a brave new world.
And it centres not on finding an out-and-out replacement for Lukaku, should he leave for Chelsea or Manchester United, but filling the void with a few.   Wayne Rooney is not being lined up as the man to take the place of Everton’s top scorer but one of the men who can take their share of the goal scoring, and creating, burden carried by the towering Belgium.
Should he leave, of course.
The almost disbelieving speed at which Everton have conducted their business so far this summer may well have given the wantaway striker food for thought but the perceived wisdom is that his mind remains made up.
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte remains hell bent on landing Lukaku, while Man United remain part of the swirl of rumours, and transfer insiders believe the wheels will be put in motion by the start of next month at the latest.   Nobody wants to lose the 25-goal hitman, one edging closer and closer each season to fulfilling his potential, but the prospect of losing him doesn’t appear as scary as it once did.
Sandro Ramirez is in, Davy Klaassen promises creativity from midfield and momentum is building behind Rooney’s return.  We’re told Olivier Giroud is a £20m target while Andre Gray and Josh King are on Everton’s radar and Gylfi Sigurdsson remains a prime target Koeman’s.
Also factor in that Ross Barkley remains an Everton player, the return of Yannick Bolasie, the potential of Ademola Lookman, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and the experience of Kevin Mirallas.
The theory would say that where Everton were too heavily relient on Lukaku last season, his departure could bring balance to the team and spread the demands for “productivity” throughout the team.
The counter argument, of course, would say you’ll always miss a striker of his potency, no matter what.
It’s a compelling point but Everton may well have reached a junction in their short-term plans where they feel, at the right price, they and Lukaku can go in different directions.  Lukaku to where to a club he wants to be at. Everton into a new era with several new faces.

Everton in £60m transfer fund boost after signing finance deal with Chinese bank
Club says deal is a big step into the massive China market
By Alistair Houghton
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton FC has signed a landmark finance deal with a Chinese bank that could bring in tens of millions of pounds over the next three years.   And the club says the £60m deal could open up new opportunities in the massive Chinese market.   Industrial and Commercial Bank of China – the world’s biggest bank – has agreed to give the club a £60m three-year credit facility.
It’s the bank’s first deal with a Premier League side and the company says it’s proud to have chosen such an “ambitious club” to work with.  The new finance deal comes as Everton are embarking on a spending spree, with the acquisitions of Sandro Ramirez and Michael Keane announced on Monday.
Jothann Durnall, relationship manager at ICBC London added: “There are a number of reasons we’re delighted to reach this agreement with Everton.  “Not only is it our first partnership with a UK football club, but it’s exciting for us to partner with such an ambitious club – we’re all looking forward to seeing the facility we’ve agreed playing a part in the club’s future successes.”   We’ve taken a closer look at why Everton have done this deal and at what it could mean for the club.
It’s not for the Bramley Moore Dock stadium plan– £60m wouldn’t be anywhere near enough for that project.  Instead this money will be used for the club’s day-to-day spending, whether on transfers or other activities.   The finance deal has only just been announced but it was actually agreed on June 30 after it got Premier League approval.   Everton will not just get £60m cash upfront. Instead, the deal means that a £60m funding pot is always available for Everton to dip into.   It’s similar to an overdraft. You don’t have to use it – but if you do, you can use it instantly and you know how much the borrowing will cost you.  So for the next three years, Everton bosses know that they will always have up to £60m to borrow.   And just like an overdraft, the facility is always there. They can dip into it and pay it off and still have £60m available.   In other words, Everton could get more than £60m in funding from this deal, depending on what they choose to do with the credit facility.
* Why are they doing it?
Because it’s easier than borrowing money every time you need it.
All big football clubs might have to make quick decisions on spending a lot of money – when a target player becomes available, for example.   Without this deal, Everton might have to do separate finance deals each time. That would take time and could cost.   With this deal, in theory, Everton has the financial headroom over the next few years to take those quick decisions.   Sasha Ryazantsev, director at Everton, added: “We are pleased to have entered into a partnership with ICBC, which will increase our financial flexibility, reduce refinancing risk and lower funding costs, while adding to the list of Everton’s ‘firsts’.”
* What does it mean for transfers?
This deal could mean that the club no longer needs to sell to buy.
In recent years Everton has had to fund its transfer spending by selling key players. But now the club has this finance package in place alongside its backing from Farhad Moshiri, it can make snap decisions to buy players without being forced to sell existing squad members.
* Can’t Farhad Moshiri just fund things?
Everton’s principal shareholder may be proudly investing in the club, but he doesn’t necessarily want to be funding day-today expenses – he wants the club to stand on its own two feet.
As above, this deal gives the club a bit of extra financial flexibility day-to-day without having to go directly to Mr Moshiri every time there’s an unexpected expense.  Mr Ryazantsev said: “Building on the significant shareholder contribution the club has received over the last year, Everton is now well-funded with sustainable long-term capital.”
Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri and chairman Bill Kenwright (Photo: Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
* China connection
Everton FC is keen to break into the massive Chinese market, with its hundreds of millions of potential fans.  Teaming up with such a massive Chinese bank could bring Everton’s name to a much bigger audience, particularly once the Premier League’s latest massive TV deal in China kicks in.   Liverpool FC is already pushing into that market and Everton won’t want to be left behind.   Mr Ryazantsev said: “The new relationship with ICBC also represents an important step for us into the Chinese capital market, and we hope to develop further commercial opportunities in China in the future.”
* What’s in it for the bank?
It’s the world’s largest bank in terms of the assets it manages, but ICBC isn’t really a household name. Doing deals with Premier League clubs will surely change that.  Ruixiang Han, General Manager of ICBC London, said “This transaction is another important milestone for ICBC in London, highlighting not only our ability to build strong relationships but also
underlining the growing credibility of Chinese banks.
“With the London branch continuing to grow since its establishment we intend to continue building on this momentum and establish ourselves as a credible and capable banking partner.”
* Does this affect the stadium finance deal with the council?
The ICBC agreement is completely separate from the £300m finance deal the club agreed with Liverpool council over the stadium and shouldn’t affect it.   Under that deal, a “Special Purpose Vehicle” company has been created by the club and the council so Everton can take advantage of the council’s better credit rating when it borrows money for the stadium.   As part of that deal the SPV has first dibs on Everton’s most important sources of income, like TV rights. That should ensure council taxpayers won’t suffer any loss if for any reason Everton can’t pay its rent on the new stadium.
And that agreement won’t change with this latest deal.

Will young Everton fan have the last laugh over Wayne Rooney shirt?
Codie Gaskell-Mooney was laughed at when he asked for the Man United player's name on his shirt
By Jenny KirkhamJake Polden
5 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
A young Everton fan may have predicted the future after being laughed at for getting "Rooney" printed on the back of his shirt.  Codie Gaskell-Mooney, from Liverpool, was so convinced that the Manchester United star would return to his former club that he asked for his name on the back of his new shirt - last month.   According to the Mirror Online , Codie's mum Claire said the 11-year-old was laughed at by staff at the Everton stadium shop and they even tried to get him to pick a different name.
But it seems he may now have the last laugh.
Reports have suggested that the 31-year-old could rejoin the club, he left back in 2004, this coming season.   Rooney 's agent Paul Stretford held talks with Everton chairman Bill Kenwright over a sensational return on Wednesday.   And United's all-time record goal scorer looks set to be heading back to Merseyside.
Codie Gaskell-Mooney could have the last laugh over his new Everton shirt
Codie opted to get the number 12 printed onto the back of his shirt despite Rooney previously wearing the 18 jersey at Goodison Park.  Undeterred by the doubters, the schoolboy opted to get Rooney's name printed onto his new training shirt back on June 11, telling shop assistants that even if he didn't sign he's "still a legend anyway". And it now appears he was bang on the money.  His reason for this however is perhaps better than the prediction itself as the number 12 represents how many goals Codie scored for his Sunday league team last season.  "Looks like he was right all along! Everyone in the Everton shop laughed at him for getting this on his top! Definitely got an inside source on this one."  The post was subsequently picked up and shared by Toffees fan pages, which helped it go viral.

Manchester United plan to use Wayne Rooney as makeweight in bid to hijack Romelu Lukaku move to Chelsea
5 July 2017 Telegraph
Manchester United are planning to use Wayne Rooney as a makeweight in a dramatic bid to hijack Chelsea’s efforts to sign Romelu Lukaku from Everton.  Antonio Conte has told Chelsea’s board to pay whatever it takes to land Lukaku but United have been given fresh encouragement in their own pursuit of the £100 million-rated Belgium striker and believe they can pip the Premier League champions for his signature.   United’s hand has been strengthened by Everton’s desire to re-sign Rooney, 13 years after he left Goodison Park for Old Trafford.   Bill Kenwright, the Everton chairman, held talks with Rooney’s agent, Paul Stretford, in London on Wednesday as the Merseyside club close in on a deal for the England striker.   United have been in talks with Real Madrid over Spain striker Alvaro Morata but negotiations are understood to have been complicated by the European champions’ desire to prise David De Gea away from Old Trafford.   What materialises with Morata, who has been trying to force through a move to Old Trafford, remains to be seen but Lukaku was Jose Mourinho’s first choice to replace Zlatan Ibrahimovic.   Senior sources at Old Trafford indicated that the club have been quietly working behind the scenes on a deal for Lukaku for several weeks amid wider public expectations that he was destined for Chelsea.   Lukaku's preference has been to return to Chelsea, who have been confident the Belgian only had his sights set on a move there.   Mourinho sold Lukaku to Everton when he was Chelsea manager for £28m in 2014 but believes he has the attributes he wants to lead the line for United and bring more firepower to an attack that managed just 54 goals in 38 league games last term.
With rather unfortunate timing, former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson – who is still a club director - branded Lukaku’s agent, Mino Raiola, a “s--- bag” while giving a motivational speech to rugby union side Sale Sharks this week when asked about Paul Pogba’s departure from Old Trafford in 2012.  Ferguson blamed Raiola for Pogba leaving, although United’s current hierarchy have good relations with the agent, who also represents United forward Henrikh Mkhitaryan and will reportedly earn £41m from the world-record £89m deal that took Pogba back to Old Trafford last summer.  Chelsea have yet to make a formal bid for Lukaku but they will not give up on the striker without a fight, not least given the onus Conte has placed on bringing the target man he wants to succeed Diego Costa to Stamford Bridge.
Mourinho is understood to have been left increasingly frustrated by United’s failure to wrap up more signings by now but the potential capture of Lukaku would go some way towards placating the Portuguese.  It is hard to imagine United would allow Rooney to depart before they have signed another centre-forward given that it would leave Mourinho with Marcus Rashford as his only recognised striker. Anthony Martial can also operate in the position but was mainly used out wide by Mourinho.
United’s players are due to report for pre-season on Saturday and it remains to be seen if Rooney flies with the rest of the squad to Los Angeles 24 hours later for the start of the club’s tour of the US.
Farhad Moshiri, Everton’s majority shareholder, recognises the commercial value in signing Rooney and various options have been discussed in terms of financing the player’s basic £240,000-a-week salary, which has previously been a stumbling block.  Everton have already signalled their ambition by spending almost £100 million on five new signings this summer and also want £40m-rated Gylfi Sigurdsson from Swansea.

Wayne Rooney's Everton return is 'a phenomenal' deal for both parties - Joey Barton
Talks are progressing between the Blues and Manchester United - and it's a deal Barton would like to see come to fruition
By Paul Gorst
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Wayne Rooney's potential Everton return is the ideal scenario for both player and club, according to Joey Barton.   The Manchester United captain has been heavily linked with a Blues return this summer after falling down the pecking order under Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford.   Blues boss and Ronald Koeman and Director of Football Steve Walsh have never played down their admiration for England's all-time top scorer and talks are progressing between the two clubs.   And boyhood Everton fan Barton thinks a Rooney return would be a great move for both the Blues and the striker himself.  Speaking to talkSPORT, Barton said: "I think it is a phenomenal move for both parties.
"It is a great move for both parties and hopefully it comes off."
Barton accepts that the 31-year-old forward is no longer at the peak of the powers that have seen him plunder 253 goals for United across 13 years, but the former Burnley man believes Rooney's experience will be invaluable to Koeman's squad.  The Huyton-born Barton added: "Obviously Wayne is an Evertonian and from Everton’s perspective even if he doesn’t reach the heights as a footballer as he once has, it is a great marketing exercise.   "He is great for Everton's brand and it will be good for Rooney's brand."   United are said to be willing to rip up the final two years of Rooney’s contract and allow him to leave Old Trafford on a free transfer, but a potential stumbling block could be the player's wages.   However, there is growing confidence that Rooney - who left the club in 2004 for the Red Devils - will become the latest arrival in a remarkable summer of recruitment.
Koeman's side have already spent over £90m on five new arrivals this transfer window.
Jordan Pickford and Davy Klaassen joined last month for a combined fee of £54m before Henry Onyekuru was added last week for around £7m.   And the Blues followed up those captures with deals to snare Tom Keane and Sandro Ramirez from Burnley and Malaga respectively on Monday for over £30m.

Everton links strengthened at Sunderland with the arrival of promising defender
July 6 2017 Northern Echo
Sunderland’s summer transfer business is up and running after defender Brendan Galloway joined on a season-long loan deal from Everton.   The pacy 21-year-old left-back, who can also play in central defence, is new manager Simon Grayson’s first signing and strengthens the Everton contingent at the club.   Galloway, set to be joined on Wearside by Everton team-mates Tyias Browning and Aiden McGeady, will link up again with former Toffees Darron Gibson and Bryan Oviedo.  Sunderland are understood to have beaten off strong competition from other clubs to land Galloway, who is close friends with Sunderland forward Duncan Watmore. The pair have both represented England at Under-21 level.   Versatile Galloway, who has made 20 Premier League appearances for Everton, has also represented England at Under-17, Under-18 and Under-19 levels.   He almost joined Newcastle United on loan at the start of last season but instead opted to further his development at West Bromwich Albion.   Galloway only made five appearances during an unsuccessful spell at The Hawthorns but will hope to make a much bigger impact at the Stadium of Light this season.   He is very highly thought of at Everton, having moved to Goodison Park from MK Dons in the summer of 2014, and will provide competition in defence for Sunderland.  While at MK Dons, the former trainee made a name for himself aged just 15, when he became League One club’s youngest first-team player ever in November 2011, making his debut against Nantwich Town in the FA Cup.   Sunderland face Bury away tomorrow night in the club’s first pre-season friendly and Galloway could be involved at Gigg Lane.   He is yet to meet his new team-mates as the rest of the Sunderland first-team and Under-23 squads have been in Austria this week, taking part in a training camp.   Grayson has been impressed with the workrate as the players look to build their fitness levels ahead of a gruelling 46-game Championship campaign.   They are due back on Wearside today ahead of final preparations for the game at Gigg Lane (7.30pm kick-off).
“It has been very good and the players have enjoyed it so far,” explained Grayson.
“There is no easy way of doing it, it is a mixture of fitness and football work – out on the bikes every morning to get them going.   “All-round, it has been very good, the past few days it has been very warm, the first couple of days it was more what we are accustomed to in the North East with the rain and the wind.   “Overall, it has been a very good trip and the people here have looked after us very well.
“The players have come back fit – it is never easy doing pre-season – but you have to work hard as it gives you a base for the rest of the season.  “Once you get into the games, the players can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  “Everything we have asked the players to do, they have given it their maximum.  “I have been very pleased with them.”

Wayne Rooney back at Everton would be a fairytale – but it may well end in tears
By Paul Wilson
July 6 2017 Guardian
Thirteen years after leaving Everton for Old Trafford, Wayne Rooney could be about to return - but does Ronald Koeman really a need a player who seems to have his peak years behind him?
Romelu Lukaku was always going to leave a big hole to fill at Everton but few would have predicted a combination of, say, Wayne Rooney and Olivier Giroud, perhaps to take over in the likely event of the Belgian striker’s departure.  Reported overtures to Arsenal’s Giroud make perfect sense; he is a reliable goalscorer, proven in the Premier League, at 30 he will have a few good years left in him and he was no longer a regular starter under Arsène Wenger. Those imagining Everton would seek a like-for-like replacement for Lukaku, as if similarly built striking powerhouses were in plentiful supply, might have to think again. Giroud, should he move to Merseyside, could be just the cutting edge required for the quick-passing side Ronald Koeman is looking to put together.   Rooney is an entirely different story. Once upon a time, as Everton remember only too well, he brought a cutting edge like no other. He has also been spending too much time in the shadows at his present club and it is entirely understandable he should wish to seek more game minutes with his boyhood team, though there is a reason why Rooney dropped off the radar at Manchester United.   Whether used as a striker or a No10 in recent seasons, José Mourinho and before him Louis van Gaal found it difficult to incorporate the club captain into a system that worked. Mourinho actually began by saying he had complete faith in Rooney’s striking abilities and would resist the temptation to drop him back to midfield, though as the season wore on it became plain – not that the manager ever admitted it or said anything over-critical – that the solution he had come up with was to drop the player altogether.   At 31 Rooney is only a year older than Giroud – not to mention four years younger than Zlatan Ibrahimovic – though perhaps because he started out so young, his playing career seems to have caught up with him. Ibrahimovic stole all the goalscoring headlines at United last season, with Rooney barely getting a look-in, and whereas Giroud was also relegated to a substitute’s role at Arsenal he frequently came off the bench and made a scoring impact. Rooney’s impact in his last few seasons at United has been muted, to put it as kindly as possible, and for that reason it is tempting to wonder not only why Koeman wants him, when there will be money in the kitty after Lukaku’s departure, but also where he plans on playing him.   As a No10 seems most likely, if only as the most effective way of making it plain to Ross Barkley other options are available. At this rate the latest homegrown Everton wunderkind is going to be making way for the previous one, 13 years after the latter left Merseyside for Manchester. Though he has lost much of his pace, Rooney retains an eye for a pass and an ability to deliver from set pieces – witness his free-kick at Stoke last season to score his 250th Manchester United goal and break Sir Bobby Charlton’s record – yet Mourinho was also interested in speeding up the tempo of attacks and in the end he preferred Ander Herrera or Juan Mata.

It is highly debatable whether Rooney is a better bet as a creative playmaker than Barkley, even if there are problems with the younger player’s contract. Gylfi Sigurdsson of Swansea is another player Koeman admires for the same position, and were Everton to be in a position to land the Iceland international it is hard to know what role Rooney may be asked to fulfil.   On the other hand, Everton stand to acquire a lot of leadership, experience and club tradition on a free transfer, even if the wage bill is likely to make Bill Kenwright’s eyes water. It should also be remembered Everton are in Europe this season, and are quite likely to opt for a significantly different lineup in cup competitions than the one they use for Premier League games. There is no problem about animosity from present Everton supporters towards a player who turned his back on the club in search of fame, fortune and trophies. Everton fans know better than most how the world works, and the famous (infamous?) “Once a blue always a blue” slogan is already being revisited approvingly rather than sarcastically.   Lots of United players have ended up at Everton in recent seasons, from Phil Neville and Tim Howard to Tom Cleverley and Morgan Schneiderlin, and looked at in such a way it is perhaps natural a player should wish to extend his career in the North-west without joining rivals such as Manchester City or Liverpool.   Yet City and Liverpool would not have been interested in signing Rooney anyway, and Neville, Howard, Schneiderlin et al still had plenty of career years left to contribute. Not everyone can keep up the peak performances United demand for the whole of their careers, and Everton have proved a useful alternative without dropping down the league too far. In one sense Rooney fits into that category and in another he does not.  Rooney has already spent all his peak years at United, that is precisely the point. To the naked eye he appears to have none left, but maybe Koeman knows better. Let us all hope so, for a homecoming hero is always a tale worth telling and it will be good to see Rooney in blue again rather than in China or on the front pages through some sort of boredom-related bother. Only a killjoy or a spoilsport would add a word of warning to such a feelgood story, but it is only a year since Mourinho had complete faith in Rooney’s undimmed ability and so did Roy Hodgson. Neither found a happy ending.

Everton newboy Davy Klaassen ready to take his game to the next level at Goodison Park
Blues' £23.6m summer signing has begun training at USM Finch Farm - and can't wait to get going at Goodison
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton newboy Davy Klaassen says he is ready to “improve every day” as he settles into life on Merseyside.  The Dutch international began training with his new teammates at USM Finch Farm earlier this week, and will be part of the Blues' travelling party which heads for Tanzania next week.  A £23.6m capture from Ajax, Klaassen arrives with a reputation as a hard-working, goalscoring midfield player.
The 24-year-old, though, believes there is more to come following his move to England.
“I will just try my best and I think I’m going to improve here every day,” said Klaassen. “Now I’m just looking forward to all the games and all the training because I already feel good here.”
“I’ve spoken to the manager about how I feel, how I’m settling, that type of stuff, and I feel really welcome here.  “The life is a little bit the same as in Holland. I live in a hotel now, it’s good and I’m looking for a house as well.”  Klaassen says the presence of manager Ronald Koeman as manager, as well as a host of other Dutch staff and players, has helped enormously with the bedding-in process.
He told “I have spoken to Maarten [Stekelenburg] and he has given me a lot of advice about things here and how everything works, and that has helped me a lot.  “That so many of the coaching staff are Dutch is also a big help and makes it easier to communicate.”

Everton braced for Romelu Lukaku bidding war as Manchester United enter chase
Jose Mourinho ready to be reunited with Lukaku
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are braced for a bidding war for Romelu Lukaku with Manchester United ready to battle Chelsea for the striker's signature.  Lukaku's future has been the subject of fierce debate, with the Belgian keen to leave Goodison Park this summer in search of Champions League football.
Chelsea had been favourites to land the 24-year-old, but it has emerged this week that United are very much back in the race, and hopeful of persuading Lukaku to move to Old Trafford - where he would be reunited with former boss Jose Mourinho.  Everton's stance has been clear from the off, with the Blues demanding a world-record £100m fee for a player who netted 26 goals in all competitions last season.
United, it is understood, would be willing to pay that, with Mourinho desperate to add a big-name striker to his ranks following the departure of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and the expected exit of Wayne Rooney.  Rooney, of course, is edging closer to a sensational return to Everton, with his agent, Paul Stretford, understood to have held talks with Blues chairman Bill Kenwright in London on Wednesday.
There remain hurdles to overcome before a deal can be finalised, but there is a growing belief on all sides that the move will go ahead.   United are believed to be ready to write off the final two years of that contract and allow their club captain to leave on a free transfer, while a loan deal is also a possibility as Everton look to continue their remarkable summer revamp.   Talks are expected to progress over the coming days, with Rooney scheduled to return to pre-season training with United on Saturday before flying out on the club's US tour 24 hours later.

Manchester United agree £75m deal with Everton for Romelu Lukaku
• United confident Belgium international will join before tour starts on Sunday
• Wayne Rooney’s potential move to Goodison Park not part of the deal
By Jamie Jackson
Thursday 6 July 2017 Guardian
Manchester United have agreed a £75m fee with Everton to buy Romelu Lukaku and are confident of pushing through the deal before the weekend so that the Belgium striker can fly out with the rest of the team to the United States on Sunday.  The move, if it goes through, will be a significant blow to Chelsea, whose manager Antonio Conte had hoped that Lukaku would re-join the London club.
Lukaku was sold from Chelsea to Everton by José Mourinho, who is now the manager at Old Trafford and the striker’s instinct had been to move back to London.  Wayne Rooney, who is in talks with Everton over a return there from United, will not be part of any deal for Lukaku.   United had been in discussions with Real Madrid over the possible signing of Álvaro Morata but became frustrated when the Spanish side refused to budge on their asking price of €90m (£79m).   Mourinho had become frustrated with the lack of signings this summer with Benfica’s Swedish centre-back Victor Lindelof the only player to join so far, despite telling the club that he wanted as many new arrivals as possible to go on the pre-season tour.

Romelu Lukaku's Everton exit imminent but no agreement with Manchester United yet
Blues insists reports of £75m fee agreed with United are premature
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Romelu Lukaku's Everton exit has moved closer today although Everton insist they have NOT yet reached any agreement with Manchester United for the striker.  United emerged this week as favourites to land the Belgian, moving ahead of Chelsea in the race after shelving their interest in Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata.  And their interest has stepped-up, with reports on Thursday that they have had an official £75m offer accepted by Everton.  However the Blues insist a deal is not yet done, leaving open the possibility that Chelsea could enter the bidding for a player they have long been linked with.
Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri and chairman Bill Kenwright  Everton have insisted throughout the summer that they will only accept a bid in the region of £100m, which always cast doubt on whether they would accept the bid from United reported this morning.  It is unclear whether United's offer will also consist of performance related add ons taking it closer to Everton's asking price.
There is also the chance, despite suggestions from Manchester, that it will factor in a compromise over the transfer of United skipper Wayne Rooney to Goodison.  United chief executive Ed Woodward is reportedly hoping Lukaku can quickly finalise personal terms with Lukaku and fast-track a medical, so the deal can be completed in time for him to fly to the USA with Jose Mourinho's squad on Sunday.
Lukaku has spent the last few weeks on holiday in USA, where he has bene pictured socialising with United star and close friend Paul Pogba. The pair share an agent, Mino Raiola, who was also instrumental in taking Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Old Trafford last summer.
Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku speak after the final whistle at Old Trafford
Sources close to United insist that the deal is NOT connected to the Blues' pursuit of Rooney, though Everton are increasingly hopeful of finalising that transfer in the coming days.
Certainly Lukaku's arrival at Old Trafford would pave the way for Rooney's exit, with the England captain's agent, Paul Stretford, having held talks with Everton chairman Bill Kenwright in London on Wednesday.  Both a permanent move and a loan deal for Rooney have been discussed, with United ready to allow the 31-year-old to leave on a free transfer if necessary.  Lukaku's departure, meanwhile, is likely to prompt a further spending spree at Goodison, with Everton hoping to add significantly to their squad before the window's end.  Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud is a target, as is Swansea's Gylfi Sigurdsson. There have been talks over a deal for Burnley frontman Andre Gray, while Bournemouth's Josh King is also on the club's radar.  The Blues have already added five players to their squad this summer, bringing in Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen, Sandro Ramirez, Michael Keane and Henry Onyekuru, who has been loaned to Anderlecht.

Former Everton striker completes transfer to Barcelona
Toni Duggan leaves Manchester City after three years to move to the Camp Nou
By Joe Rimmer
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Former Everton Ladies star Toni Duggan has completed a dream transfer to Barcelona.
The 25-year-old began her career with Everton in 2007, scoring 17 goals for the Toffees in 40 appearances and winning the FA Women's Premier League Cup in 2008 and the FA Cup in 2010.
Duggan moved to Manchester City in 2014, where she scored 19 goals in 44 games and helped the club win the WSL title in 2016.  The forward signs a two year deal with Barcelona, becoming the first English player to move to the Camp Nou since Gary Lineker left Everton in 1986.  She said: “FC Barcelona are known all over the world for playing attractive football and I naturally wanted to be part of that. I think my style of play will suit the team and I’m honoured to be part of the club.  "My new coach Fran Sanchez has told me that their ambition is to win the Women’s Champions League and the club have made that very clear with their signings over the years. I want to help my team mates to achieve that ambition.
"I’ve had a lot of success in England and I’ve really enjoyed my time with Manchester City but I wanted to challenge myself even further by playing abroad.  "Barcelona are one of the world’s biggest clubs and I’ve totally bought into their philosophy. I’m also looking forward to learning Spanish and living in the city."

Everton have three TV games as Sky and BT announce opening fixtures
The Blues first televised game will be August 21 trip to Manchester City
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Three of Everton's first seven Premier League fixtures have been moved for live television coverage.
Sky and BT have confirmed their first TV picks for the 2016/17 campaign, and the Blues feature prominently.   Their first game of the season, at home to Stoke on Saturday August 12, is unaffected.
But their trip to Manchester City has been moved to Monday August 21, screened live on Sky Sports with an 8pm kick off.  The trip to Old Trafford, which could have added spice given the current situation regarding Wayne Rooney and Romelu Lukaku , will now take place on Sunday September 17, again on Sky Sports with a 4pm kick off.  And the home game with Burnley has been put back to Sunday October 1, with a 2.15pm kick off, also shown on Sky Sports.  Everton's home fixture against Arsenal - planned for Saturday October 21 - will move to either Sunday October 22 or Monday October 23, due to the Gunners' confirmed participation in the Europa League group stages.  Confirmation of the final date and time will be made when the October and November television selections are made.  The new Premier League season will get underway on a Friday night, with Arsenal hosting Leicester at the Emirates on August 11.

Everton, Lukaku and Manchester United - what could happen next
United have jumped ahead of Chelsea in the race for Lukaku but nothing is certain yet
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
After months – years even – of speculation, it appears Romelu Lukaku's Everton career is coming to an end.  Blues sources may insist that Wednesday's reports of a £75m agreement with Manchester United are premature, but clearly something is happening with regards to the Belgian.  News of United overtaking Chelsea in the race to sign the striker spread quickly on Tuesday evening, and within 24 hours things had moved forward significantly. Jose Mourinho, it is understood, hopes to have Lukaku in his squad when they travel to the USA on Sunday.  United clearly believe the deal will happen, but with Everton claiming 'no deal, no agreement' as of yet, is that the case?
Here's a look at what could happen next...
Will Chelsea return?
There was much surprise when word of United 'leading the race' for Lukaku emerged this week.
For weeks, it had seemed the 24-year-old was bound for Stamford Bridge. Antonio Conte wanted a striker to boost his title-winning squad, and the uncertainty surrounding Diego Costa's future merely added to the urgency.  Lukaku was understood to have been keen on a return to Chelsea, where he made just 15 appearances across three years earlier in his career.  With United now seemingly in the box seat, will the Londoners return with an offer of their own, or will they move on to alternative targets
Alvaro Morata of Real Madrid celebrates the Champions League victory at Cibeles square on June 4, 2017 in Madrid  With Everton flatly denying widespread reports of an agreement with United, are they hoping to spark a bidding war? Their asking price for Lukaku has always been £100m, after all.
And with news earlier in the summer that Conte was frustrated at a lack of progress with regards to summer additions, what would missing out on Lukaku mean for the Italian?
How big is the Rooney factor?
Sources close to Manchester United insist that any deal for Lukaku – whether agreed or not at present – is NOT connected to Everton's bid to sign Wayne Rooney.  However, it is impossible to believe that, with high-level negotiations going on between the two clubs, the deals could be entirely separate.
The understanding is that United are willing to rip up the last two years of Rooney's £250,000-a-week contract in order to allow him to move to Goodison on a free transfer.
Would that gesture help them secure Lukaku at a knockdown price perhaps?
Is that what has moved them ahead of Chelsea, who have no such bargaining chip at their disposal?
Rooney, it is understood, welcomes the idea of a return to Merseyside. And if Lukaku has gone, then the No.10 shirt will be ready and waiting for him
What does Lukaku want?
This is the unknown, at present. Lukaku has made no secret of his distaste at the constant speculation surrounding his future, using social media to make his feelings clear.  Lukaku wants to play in the Champions League, which would be the case at either United or Chelsea. His decision to snub a new contract at Everton back in March shocked the Blues, but he has rarely hidden his ambition to test himself at the very highest level.  His relationship with Mourinho adds a layer of intrigue to any potential Old Trafford switch. Mourinho was the manager who loaned Lukaku to Everton in 2013, with the deal made permanent a year later.
Lukaku, indeed, made just three appearances under him at Stamford Bridge – the last of which saw him miss a crucial penalty in a UEFA Super Cup defeat to Bayern Munich.  That was four years ago, time enough to heal any divide that may have existed. Lukaku would certainly be first choice at United next season, as he would at Chelsea.  Would the presence of Paul Pogba, a friend and fellow Mino Raiola client, help sway his decision? The pair have certainly been spending a lot of time together this summer...
What does it mean for Everton?
Let's be straight now; Lukaku is almost certainly off. And whether it's for £100m, £75m or something in between, we know what to expect from Everton – spending.  The Rooney deal would be the most high-profile of the lot, and the Blues are increasingly confident of sealing that. But others would follow.
Olivier Giroud, the Arsenal striker, is a target and would help replace Lukaku's physical presence. He's a proven Premier League striker, available for around £20m.  Interest in Swansea's Gylfi Sigurdsson remains, and Everton are also keen on Burnley striker Andre Gray. Josh King of Bournemouth is another on the list, having caught the eye with 16 goals in the Premier League last season.  With five signings already done, this is almost certain to be the busiest summer in Everton's history. And Lukaku, fine player that he is, is just a part of it.

Everton expect Chelsea to aggressively challenge Manchester United for Romelu Lukaku as £75m transfer tussle ramps up
Those close to Chelsea maintain that no deal is done and there could yet be a response - and a high bid - that could swing the situation again
By Miguel Delaney Chief Football Writer
Thursday 6 July 2017 Independent
Everton expect Chelsea to aggressively challenge Manchester United for the signature of Romelu Lukaku despite Jose Mourinho’s personal intervention this week putting them in pole position to sign him.
While there has not yet been an official bid from United - explaining some of the apparent contradictions in information over the last 24 hours as to whether any offer was accepted - there have indeed been positive discussions between Everton and the Manchester club that were also connected to Wayne Rooney's pending return to Goodison Park, meaning it is believed that £75m could be enough to seal the deal.   Lukaku himself is willing to go to United and team up with former Chelsea boss Mourinho despite having previously looked set to return to Stamford Bridge. Those close to the situation now consider it likely he will end up at Old Trafford.
How Manchester United could line up next season
The Old Trafford hierarchy had made initial enquiries for the striker in the wake of top target Antoine Griezmann's decision to remain at Atletico Madrid back at the beginning of June, only to be told that there had been significant progress in an anticipated move back to Chelsea.
The stalling of that, in what has been a somewhat frustrating summer transfer window for the Premier League champions so far - as well as Real Madrid's refusal to budge on their €90m asking price for United target Alvaro Morata - saw the Manchester club sense an opportunity to pounce. It quickly became apparent that both the Toffees and Lukaku would be willing to do business, in a move that will likely net him upwards of £200,000 a week in wages.  Those close to Chelsea, however, maintain that no deal is done and there could yet be a response - and a high bid - that could swing the situation again, but it would currently take something significant to dislodge United.
The move comes as Mourinho himself is said to have taken a more hands-on role in transfers in his determination to get business done.
Mourinho's transfer frustrations begin to boil over
He is understood to have no real preference over whether it is Morata or Lukaku, although there would obviously be a certain satisfaction in trumping his former club to a big deal.  United sources have also said a Lukaku move would kill any deal for Morata, but others at Old Trafford and close to Real Madrid maintain that would not be the case, and Mourinho would actually still like to bring in two forwards.
A further twist to an already complicated situation, however, is that Lukaku going to United could see Chelsea finally turn to Morata again after initially cooling their interest.
Manchester United summer transfer targets
Nemanja Matic is also still likely to go to Old Trafford once the champions sign Tiemoue Bakayoko from Monaco.

Wayne Rooney will bring a buzz to Goodison, but what else does he have left?
Does the former Blues prodigy still have the edge to light up Goodison?
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
For the second time in his career, Wayne Rooney is creating big noise at Everton . From teenage dreams to Indian summers, the buzz is back at Goodison.
Interesting times indeed.
It looks tailor-made. Romelu Lukaku's exit will free up not only the No.10 jersey but also a place as the leader of Everton's attack – talisman wanted, bring goals, assists and experience.
Rooney certainly brings the latter, but what about the former?
Wayne Rooney celebrates scoring against Swansea City at Old Trafford in April
His last two Premier League seasons yielded five and eight goals respectively. Not since his debut campaign as a professional, 2002-03, has he managed fewer.  Confusion over his role played a part for sure, but the eye test told of a player lacking form, short of mobility and unable to influence games against even modest opposition. There were moments, flashes, but they were few and far between.
Rooney finished 2016-17 with the ignominy of a token final-minute appearance as a substitute in the Europa League final in Stockholm. Seven weeks later, and United are prepared to write off the final two years of their club captain's contract just to get him out the door.
Wayne Rooney prepares to come on towards the end of the Europa League Final between Ajax and Manchester United  'Ouch' is the word that springs to mind.  Rooney will certainly arrive at Goodison with question marks. He's the record scorer for England and for Manchester United, but how much is left in the tank? Does his motivation and passion for the game remain? Have Everton fans REALLY forgiven him for his departure?
And, crucially, is the decline of the past two seasons terminal?
In theory, he should have a few years left at the top yet. He doesn't turn 32 until October – the likes of Teddy Sheringham, Alan Shearer and Peter Beardsley were able to continue well beyond that, while Jermain Defoe, 35 next birthday, remains a Premier League starter.
The hope is that a return to Everton will re-energise a career in danger of fizzling out, that it will relight the fire in Rooney's belly. A gamble, sure, but one which Bill Kenwright, Steve Walsh and Ronald Koeman feel is worth taking, and which Farhad Moshiri is prepared to back.  Remember those early days, when it felt like Rooney was taking on the world on behalf of Evertonians? Remember that feeling around Goodison when he was emerging? Those were not golden times for the club necessarily, but there was something to be excited by, something to be proud of. The boy wonder, with his gifted feet and his f*** you attitude, offered hope among the struggle. He was thrilling, box-office talent.  He's no longer that player – though he looks younger now than he did then! - and it would be unfair to expect him to carry the same kind of responsibility, regardless of his pay packet. He simply can't do it all any more, much as he'd love to believe he can.  Still, a motivated Rooney is an asset. He'll create an interest wherever he goes, bring nous and big-game experience to the dressing room, elevate standards on the training ground.   And if he can chip in with a few moments of trademark class along the way, then Robert's your mother's brother.

Everton loan prospect Anton Donkor says Blues return is right move
The Wolfsburg forward loved it at Everton but struggled with the accent
By Neil Jones
6 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are set to bring Anton Donkor back to boost their U23 ranks this season.
The teenage forward joined the Blues on loan from Wolfsburg in January, but managed just three appearances for David Unsworth's side before suffering a season-ending ankle injury.
Everton allowed the 19-year-old to return to Germany to complete his rehabilitation, but are keen to secure a fresh loan deal this summer so they can have a second look at the talented prospect.
Donkor has met with Wolfsburg sporting director Olaf Rebbe to discuss the move, and is keen on returning to England for the new season.
Speaking in Germany, he said: “It is definitely the right move for me.”
The initial deal which took Donkor to Merseyside included a clause which would have enabled Everton to sign the player permanently for a fee of £1.5m, though the injury scuppered that.
Everton have already added one player, striker Boris Mathis, to their U23 ranks this season as they prepare to defend their Premier League 2 crown. Unsworth's side are back in pre-season training at Finch Farm, and begin their friendly schedule at Accrington Stanley later this month. Donkor could be in place by then.  Speaking to, Donkor also revealed how much he had enjoyed his initial, short-lived spell at Everton.  He said: “It's great to learn from such great players, and as a young professional you are treated like a fully-fledged part of the team, which is great.
“The best that could have happened would have been if Wolfsburg had left me at the end of my six months and Everton wanted to keep me. That would have meant that it would have gone very well!”
Interestingly, however, he detailed one thing he initially struggled with.
“I thought I had learned English properly at school,” he said. “But the dialect here is really very special.
“When they say 'bird', it does not mean 'bird' but 'girl'. You have to get used to something like that.”

Everton transfer rumours - Blues dealt Olivier Giroud blow as Marseille close in
A round-up of EFC transfer rumours and speculation from around the web
By Joe Rimmer
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton's chances of signing Olivier Giroud as a replacement for Romelu Lukaku could have taken a hit.
The Toffees had been linked with the Frenchman, who has struggled for game-time at Arsenal and is likely to fall further down the pecking order with the arrival of Alexandre Lacazette.
The 30-year-old has a very impressive scoring record for the Gunners, netting 98 goals in five seasons at the Emirates.  And it seems that Marseille are to see off interest from West Ham, Lyon and of course, Everton by securing a return to France for Giroud.  They are reportedly growing increasingly confident of signing Giroud in a deal worth almost £25m.  Giroud has previously spoken of his admiration for Marseille.  "I am not insensitive to the approaches of the French clubs and especially that of a mythical club like Marseille,” he told Telefoot last month.  The Toffees are close to agreeing to the sale of Lukaku to Manchester United and are working on a deal to bring Wayne Rooney back to Goodison Park.

Blow for QPR with starlet Josh Bowler to join Everton in deal worth up to £4m
By  simon johnson
July 7 2017 London Evening Standard
QPR have agreed to sell exciting starlet Josh Bowler to Everton in a deal worth up to £4m.
Bowler has been at the club since he was 14 and only signed his first professional contract in March, making his senior debut against Norwich two months later.  Rangers director of football Les Ferdinand tried to convinced the 18-year-old to stay, but the winger made it clear he wanted to move to Goodison Park.  It is understood Everton will pay an initial £1.5m up front, with a further £2.5m depending on a series of add-ons. Ferdinand, who rejected Everton's first offer of £500,000, told Standard Sport: "I had a chat with Josh and his dad in May and told him that he would play for our first team quicker than Everton's.  "I made all the points about the advantages of being here at QPR and hoped it resonated with him.  "We hoped to keep hold of him, but when a Premier League club comes knocking on the door, they have the finances to make a move."

Everton will miss Romelu Lukaku here are 87 reasons why
Twitter account @Evertonfcpics has compiled every one of striker's Blues goals
By Greg O’Keeffe
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Love him, hate him, sick of talking about him - one thing you can't dispute about Romelu Lukaku is his goals.  He knows where the back of the net is.  The big Belgian has proved that from his Everton debut, on loan in 2013, to his final season.  It seems Manchester United have stolen a march on Premier League Champions Chelsea in the race to be Lukaku's next employer.
Many Everton fans have already moved on.
But Ronald Koeman will know that one of his key tasks now; and he has already recruited the highly-rated Sandro Ramirez from Malaga, is finding a way to replace those goals.
Everton have been linked with interest in Arsenal's Olivier Giroud and Gylfi Sigurdsson at Swansea City.
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen where Lukaku will be scoring next season

Belotti, Giroud, Modeste - Who Everton could turn to when replacing Romelu Lukaku
Romelu Lukaku looks certain to leave and Everton will need reinforcements
By Kristian Walsh
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Bar a turnaround bigger than the QE2 trying to navigate Queens Drive, Romelu Lukaku is certain to leave Everton this summer.  Though the Blues have been busy already in the transfer market, strengthening their forward line with the signing of Sandro, the Belgian’s boots are big ones to fill.  Eight seven goals in just 166 appearances, 26 of them last season, means Ronald Koeman and Steve Walsh will recognise the necessity to replace him.  Wayne Rooney is expected to return to Goodison, but he is no longer the lone striker that he once was.  Sandro can and will lead the line – as can teenage duo Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Ademola Lookman, if needed – but with plenty of money at their disposal, Everton can be creative in their pursuit of a new front man.  That’s not to suggest they will simply reinvest the Lukaku fee on one player, of course. That is one option, but the Blues could distribute that money across the pitch to swell the squad even further.  Exciting times for all those in royal blue – but who could become their new hero up front?  Here are seven suggestions about where some, if not all, of the Lukaku income could be spent. 
The marquee signing – Andrea Belotti
Coveted by Chelsea and Manchester United in this transfer window, if reports are to be believed.
But the Torino striker, who scored 26 goals in 35 Serie A games last season, would be making a visible step up by joining Koeman at Goodison.  At just 23, he is younger than Lukaku and has a similar profile; he also managed 10 goals with his head in 2016/17, but is equally adept with his feet.  Without question, he would be the striking option to make Europe sit up and take note.
Belotti scored 26 league goals last season
The shrewd addition – Andre Gray
Everton have already expressed a firm interest in the Burnley striker, who managed nine goals last season for the Clarets.  The 26-year-old has just one year remaining on his contract, which opens up the possibility of a better deal for the former Brentford man.  Gray adapted to life in the Premier League well enough, and could prove a bargain for the Blues.
The like-for-like – Michy Batshuyai
One bulldozing Belgian departs, in comes another? Although the Chelsea man struggled for minutes since his move from Marseille last summer, his 17 goals in 36 appearances in his final season with the French club should not be dismissed.  Batshuyai is not near Lukaku’s class and is just a year younger than his free-scoring compatriot, but there is clear talent there. He could prove a good option in addition to Sandro and Rooney up front.
The Eredivisie star – Nicolai Jorgensen
Koeman has already shown his interest in the Dutch market this summer, acquiring Davy Klaassen from Ajax in a £24million deal.   Indeed, when he first arrived at Southampton, he brought Graziano Pelle – then at Feyenoord – with him.  If he was minded to strike a similar deal this summer, Jorgensen would be the obvious option. After 21 goals for the Rotterdam club in their title-winning campaign, making him the league’s top scorer, the 26-year-old Dane could be ready to make the step up into the Premier League.
The ‘Koeman’ striker – Olivier Giroud
Pelle was a big hit for Koeman in his first year at the Saints. Little wonder, given he fits the attributes of the sort of striker the Dutchman likes.  Strong, good in the air and capable of leading the line on his own, Pelle scored 23 goals in two seasons at St Mary’s.  Giroud fits a similar profile, and is a similar player – better than the Italian, in fact. After five seasons at the Emirates, the Frenchman knows all about the Premier League and can serve as Koeman’s target man.
The SPL hitman – Moussa Dembele
Dembele took Scottish football by storm last season, scoring 17 goals in just 20 starts in Celtic’s unbeaten league campaign.  Still just 20, the electric Frenchman has brilliant movement and possesses real nerve in front of goal.  Dembele also notched 15 goals in the Championship for Fulham the season previous, catching the eye of some of Europe’s top clubs.
The statistican’s choice – Anthony Modeste
Known in England for his awful spell at Blackburn in 2011/12 – scoring no goals in nine appearances – he is now a goal machine with Koln in Germany, scoring 40 goals over the past two league campaigns.
His 25 last season came after just 101 shots – meaning, on average, he scored once with every four shots. A remarkable hit-rate.  After a big-money move to China fell through, he is back on the market – but with that sort of accuracy in front of goal, he surely won’t be much longer.

Everton is the right club at the right time for Michael Keane
The man who sold him to Everton has given his blessing to the move
By Kristian Walsh
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Michael Keane has joined the right club at the right time – according to the manager who sanctioned his £25million move to Everton.  Burnley boss Sean Dyche, who brought the defender to Turf Moor in 2015, has admitted he was never going to block the 24-year-old’s departure from the club, citing the need for Keane to progress further in his career.  The England international was one of the league’s best centre-backs last season, with Dyche believing joining the revolution at Goodison is the right decision.
“I mentioned last year to him and to the world, when people were chasing after him, that I thought he had more to do at Burnley, before he moves on,” Dyche said.
“Now I think now he’s in a really good place to go on and take his career on again - and we can only thank him for what he’s done.  “He’s been a fantastic servant to us, both on and off the pitch.
“The reality was that Michael was probably going to move. It’s not about him wanting to leave; it’s just a natural progression.  “It’s fair to say that Everton have been in the Premier League for a very long time and they’re looking to get even stronger. They’re making a big investment there now and it’s a right move at the right time for him.  “I think Michael spoke very well about our club and about what he’s done here and rightly so, as he’s had a fantastic journey.  “There comes a time for some of these players when it’s probably appropriate they move on and I think on this occasion it is.”  Keane is one of five new faces at the club so far this summer, with the expectation more will follow – including Wayne Rooney, who Keane will have trained with during his time at Manchester United.

Everton move a step closer to discovering Europa League opposition
Everton will find out their opponents on July 14
By Kristian Walsh
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton have moved a step closer to discovering their Europa League opposition at the end of the month, after the ties for the second round of qualifying were finalised.  The first round of qualification was completed on Thursday, leaving 64 teams at this stage of the competition – with 32 winners advancing to the third qualifying round, the stage where the Blues join.  The likes of Galatasaray – who will be seeded if they advance, along with Everton – are vying for their place in the next round, while British and Irish representation comes from Irish duo Cork and Shamrock, as well as Scottish Premiership runners-up Aberdeen.
Though the seedings of the competition remain unclear due to the considerable number of permutations, the Blues will be seeded in their attempts to reach the group stages.
Teams such as Brondby, Utrecht, Red Star Belgrade and the aforementioned Aberdeen could await the Blues in the next round.  The ties for the second round will take place on July 13 and 20, with Everton’s campaign kicking off on July 27.  The draw for the third qualifying round will take place on July 14.
The second round qualifying draw:
Željezničar (BIH) v AIK (SWE)
Haugesund (NOR) v Lech Poznań (POL)
Apollon Limassol (CYP) v Zaria Balti (MDA)
AEK Larnaca (CYP) v Cork City (IRL)
Brøndby (DEN) v VPS Vaasa (FIN)
Rabotnicki (MKD) v Dinamo Minsk (BLR)
Kairat Almaty (KAZ) v Skënderbeu (ALB)
IFK Norrköping (SWE) v Trakai (LTU)
Slovan Bratislava (SVK) v Lyngby (DEN)
Panionios (GRE) v Gorica (SVN)
Hajduk Split (CRO) v Levski Sofia (BUL)
Shamrock Rovers (IRL) v Mladá Boleslav (CZE)
Zirä (AZE) v Astra Giurgiu (ROU)
Nõmme Kalju (EST) v Videoton (HUN)
Maccabi Tel-Aviv (ISR) v KR Reykjavík (ISL)
Altach (AUT) v Dinamo Brest (BLR)
Aberdeen (SCO) v Široki Brijeg (BIH)
Valletta (MLT) v Utrecht (NED)
Östersund (SWE) v Galatasaray (TUR)
Ferencváros (HUN) v Midtjylland (DEN)
Ružomberok (SVK) v Brann (NOR)
İnter Bakı (AZE) v Fola Esch (LUX)
Sturm Graz (AUT) v Mladost Podgorica (MNE)
Liepāja (LVA) v Sūduva (LTU)
Vaduz (LIE) v Odd (NOR)
Shkëndija (MKD) v HJK Helsinki (FIN)
Gabala (AZE) v Jagiellonia Białystok (POL)
Valur Reykjavík (ISL) v Domžale (SVN)
Trenčín (SVK) v Bnei Yehuda Tel-Aviv (ISR)
Progrès Niederkorn (LUX) v AEL Limassol (CYP)
Irtysh Pavlodar (KAZ) v Red Star Belgrade (SRB)
Osijek (CRO) v Luzern (SUI)

Everton not pursuing deal for Virgil van Dijk despite increased speculation
Speculation has increased on the Southampton centre-back heading to Goodison this summer
By Kristian Walsh
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton are not currently pursuing a deal for Virgil van Dijk.
Speculation has increased on the Southampton centre-back heading to Goodison this summer after bookmakers slashed the odds on him reuniting with Ronald Koeman on Merseyside.
Though Koeman is an admirer of his fellow Dutchman, having brought him to English football during his time with the Saints, the ECHO understands the Blues are not planning on reinforcing their backline with another potential record deal.  While the £25million move to bring Michael Keane to Everton could become a club record, Southampton are determined to keep hold of their star man and are thought to be wanting at least £75million – a world record fee for a defender – to sell van Dijk.  Van Dijk has attracted attention from other Premier League clubs - and expressed his desire to join Liverpool before the Reds were forced into an embarrassing u-turn - but returned to training on the South Coast for pre-season this week.
Meanwhile, the Blues are not interested in Leicester winger Demarai Gray.
The 21-year-old – signed from Birmingham during Steve Walsh’s time at the King Power Stadium – has been linked with a move to Merseyside, but Everton are not monitoring his situation as things stand.

"There's only one Bradley Lowery" - Everton's beautiful tribute as brave six-year-old dies
The Blues' moving tribute to the cancer sufferer after his death
By Connor Dunn
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Everton Football Club released an emotional tribute to Bradley Lowery after it was confirmed the young football fan lost his fight with cancer.  Bradley touched the hearts of Merseyside when he was carried on to the pitch at Goodison Park before the Premier League match between Man City and Everton in January before then being welcomed back as Sunderland’s mascot for their away game against the Blues in February.  The club also donated £200,000 to the fund raising campaign for the youngster.A statement from EFC read: “Everyone at the club was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Bradley Lowery.  “The young Sunderland supporter won the hearts of football fans up and down the country and had become part of the Everton family following two visits to Goodison in January and February this year.”  While Everton chairman Bill Kenwright said: “One of football’s all-time greats. We are so privileged to have known him and will always be proud that he chose us as his second club.
“We send our loving thoughts to his mam and dad and his family plus those who were inspired by him throughout the world of football.  “Especially our friends the supporters, team and staff at Sunderland AFC. And of course his beloved Jermaine. Respect!!  “Bradley Lowery. There’s only one Bradley Lowery.”

How Bradley Lowery won over the hearts of Everton fans
The six-year-old's passing was confirmed by his parents on Friday afternoon
By Paul Gorst
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
The tragic passing of Bradley Lowery has been met with an outpouring of sadness from Everton and their fans.  The six-year-old's passing was confirmed by his parents in a statement posted on Facebook on Friday afternoon.  Sunderland fanatic Bradley, who was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma at 18 months, had been receiving end-of-life care at his home in County Durham this week.
The Blues welcomed Bradley to Goodison Park twice last season, and they released a statement on Friday expressing their sadness at the heartbreaking news.
It read: "Everyone at Everton Football Club was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Bradley Lowery.  "The young Sunderland supporter won the hearts of football fans up and down the country and had become part of the Everton family following two visits to Goodison in January and February this year."  Everton chairman Bill Kenwright added: "We are so privileged to have known him...and will always be proud that he chose us as his second club.    “We send our loving thoughts to his mum and dad and his those who were inspired by him throughout the world of football.
"Especially our friends the supporters, team and staff at Sunderland AFC. And of course his beloved Jermain (Defoe). Respect!!"
In a Facebook post on Friday, Bradley's devastated mum Gemma said: "My brave boy has went with the angels today 07/07/17 at 13:35, in mammy and daddies arms surrounded by his family.
"He was our little superhero and put the biggest fight up but he was needed elsewhere.
"There are no words to describe how heart broken we are."
The young Black Cats supporter was welcomed wholeheartedly into Goodison Park by Blues fans in January as he became a mascot for the day as Ronald Koeman's men hosted Manchester City.
Matchday mascot Bradley Lowery together with Jermain Defoe at Goodison Park
Bradley's idol was former Sunderland star Defoe , with whom he forged a friendship with in his final few months, but the youngster also struck up a rapport with Romelu Lukaku who carried him onto the pitch before the game against City.   Lukaku introduced Bradley to the Manchester City players ahead of the game before he was given the best wishes of a number of young Everton fans in the stadium.  Bradley was also present at Goodison when Sunderland visited back in April .
Everton chairman Bill Kenwright is a friend of Philip Green
The youngster wore a Sunderland shirt with a message of thanks for Everton stitched onto the back as Defoe carried him around the ground.  The Blues donated £200,000 in September last year to help with Bradley's fight against his illness, and he was given a hero's welcome on both of his visits to Goodison.
On Friday, Bradley's passing was marked by a whole host of personalities connected with Blues.

Everton View from Gwladys Street 'Now Rooney needs Everton more than Blues need him'
Everton fan and journalist Elliott Bretland with his take on Lukaku and Rooney
By Greg O’KeeffeElliott Bretland
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
I don't really mind that much either way, so long as Everton get the fee they want at the earliest point possible.  However, if pushed, I would personally prefer to see him go to Manchester United over Chelsea.  Everton have always had a positive relationship with the Old Trafford club in the modern era of football and, obviously, there is the Wayne Rooney switch to consider which Ronald Koeman and Steve Walsh are seemingly keen to wrap up.  Chelsea's pursuit of John Stones in 2015 (admittedly with United's current boss Jose Mourinho at the helm) soured things between us and the west Londoners and, being honest, I don't like to see them succeed.  Lukaku's overtures and yearning for his former club throughout his time at Everton, and that wink, also puts me off him leaving for Chelsea.
Should the Blues hold out for £100m? Was that ever realistic?
Certainly. In today's frankly ridiculous valuations, I would argue Lukaku's goals are absolutely worth £100million to the selling club. In fact, they are priceless.  It's up to Everton to assemble a group of replacements who can score more goals than the team managed last season so there is no need to miss Lukaku next year.  I think we should hold out for as much as possible. Everton are in the strongest financial position they have been for years and do not have to sell.
If rivals want to sign our star man, they have to stump up the cash.
I do, though, accept the view that Lukaku staying any longer could affect the mood in the dressing room and the best option is to cash in for £75m, with add-ons, as early as possible.
What do you make of the suggested ways Koeman could try to replace his goals?
I certainly don't think Everton can replace Lukaku with one player and like the fact we are looking to sign a number of forward players.   Sandro Ramirez, Giroud and Rooney would certainly give us different options in attack, something we have severely lacked in the final third for easily a decade – we have persisted with only one capable, quality striker for too long - while I would like to see one of Moussa Dembele, Michy Batshuayi or Josh King added to the stable of frontmen.
Rooney excites me for nostalgia reasons and the fact I feel he still boasts enough qualities to improve Everton on and off the pitch.  As for Giroud, while I haven't been a huge fan during his time at Arsenal, the prospect of him joining the Toffees is now really exciting me.  I relish seeing a typical target man leading the line for us, drawing other players in, which I'm sure will see our midfielders chip in with more goals as our attacks become more effective and run much smoother.
What will be your abiding Lukaku memory?
He has scored so many memorable goals that there will certainly be more than one popping into my head when I think back.  I was there in the away end for his introduction at West Ham when he powerfully headed home, the barnstorming run at City, Chelsea in the Cup, the Merseyside derby goals, the curler at West Brom, Europe...  However, the main image, will be him stood, arms outstretched arms, at the Gwladys Street end after netting against Hull. In that moment, I just thought 'this guy is the absolute real deal and what a privilege it is to witness him play for Everton’.
After seeing him race to celebrate with Duncan Ferguson in a season he became our all-time Premier League goalscorer, I convinced myself he'd 'got it' and would be here for the long-haul.
However, he's off and, it's sad to say, I don't feel he will ever be an Everton legend; never adored by us as he should have been - and it's all his own doing.  His constant comments in the media, desperately looking for his big move and belittling us in the process during international duty meant we could never really take him to our hearts - the connection between Lukaku and the fans was just never really there as there was no real respect. It's been a four-year marriage of convenience for both parties.
Lukaku's attitude has never been befitting of someone who will go on to hold iconic status at Goodison Park. He'll be revered by us for years to come but any praise will always be followed by a 'but'.
Is it right to go back in for Rooney?  Absolutely. Though, for the first time since his departure in 2004, Rooney now needs Everton more than Everton needs Wayne Rooney.  For that reason, he has a point to prove - not only to us but to the football masses - and so I hope that reignites the fire in his belly. I don’t believe he has declined so much in terms of quality, I just feel he needs a fresh challenge to spark himself back into form.  Wayne Rooney prepares to come on towards the end of the Europa League Final between Ajax and Manchester United  He's capable of moments of magic and I am confident he’ll be responsible for getting fans out of seats in anticipation more than any other player. I can also sense a winner at Anfield – it’s written in the Rooney story as he comes full circle, surely?!
His unbelievable free-kick against Stoke last season salvaged United a point and I reckon he could earn us many valuable results.  The Rooney name, too, is known worldwide and so any return would certainly have football lovers across the globe talking about us.  It will be great to see a real, passionate Evertonian (who left us, yes, but he won the lot) back where he belongs and leading the other boyhood Blues in the team - hopefully to silverware and glory!
    A scouser knocks Liverpool of there perch. Haha. An evertoniian aswell. Yes. People. U can't imagine how happy I am tonight. Believe
    — Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) May 14, 2011
His tweet: ‘A scouser knocks Liverpool of there perch. Haha. An evertonian aswell. Yes. People. U can't imagine how happy I am tonight. Believe’ after United’s title win in 2011 eclipsed our rivals’ haul, convinced me further his blood was still Everton blue and I admit, I have wanted him back since the day he left.   This is a transfer of real meaning and emotion for me personally, though as others would suggest, it may not be the right reason for him to come home.   It will be interesting to see if there is a happy ending to Rooney’s Everton chapter.

Romelu Lukaku Manchester United transfer 'confirmed' by former Everton captain
Neville, who also served United for a decade before moving to Goodison, posted a Photoshopped image of Lukaku in a United shirt on Instagram
By Kristian Walsh
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Romelu Lukaku's move to Manchester United has been 'confirmed' – as a joke by former Everton captain Phil Neville.  Neville, who also served United for a decade before moving to Goodison, posted a Photoshopped image of Lukaku in a United shirt on Instagram.  “Left one great club and joined another @rlukaku9 congratulations,” he wrote, before confirming it had been shared for fun.
“Haahhahahahaahhahahahahahahaha a bit of fun guys relax,” he added.
The doctored image placed the Everton man's head on the body of a United player modelling their new home shirt for the 2017/18 season.  Neville's former team-mate and Everton legend Tim Cahill was not too impressed by the gag, writing: “Bore off @philipneville18.”  Neville spent eight years with the Blues and was handed the armband by David Moyes in 2007, before retiring in 2013.  Lukaku is expected to complete his transfer to Old Trafford soon in a deal worth over £75million.

Manchester United player Wayne Rooney agrees Everton transfer
Man Utd transfer news features a major update on Wayne Rooney which could hasten Romelu Lukaku's transfer.
By Charlotte Duncker
7 JUL 2017 Manchester Evening News
Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney is set to rejoin Everton 13 years after leaving his boyhood club.  MEN Sport understands United and Everton reached a breakthrough in negotiations on Friday and the deal is now effectively done ahead of an official announcement.  Rooney, 31, was previously receptive to moving to the Chinese Super League, with Beijing Guoan and Shenzhen showing interest, but his wife was understood to be reluctant to uproot their young family to the Far East.It is understood a recent change in events caused Rooney to go cold on moving to China and he could now complete his Goodison Park return in the coming days.  Rooney has entered the last two years of his United contract and his agent Paul Stretford explored a possible mid-season move to China.
Despite interest from MLS clubs, there were no serious offers made to Rooney to relocate to the States. MLS commissioner Don Garber told the M.E.N. the league would only consider Rooney after his contract with United expired.  Jose Mourinho dropped Rooney after just five Premier League games last season and the England skipper lined up only 10 more times during the league campaign.  Rooney still managed to usurp Sir Bobby Charlton as the club's record goalscorer with a late free-kick at Stoke in January and completed the haul of major club honours with a Europa League winner's medal in May. Rooney ended his last United season with eight goals from 39 appearances.  Rooney has always maintained the only other Premier League club he would play for was Everton and the Merseysiders hardly concealed their desire to re-sign Rooney.  The move down the East Lancs Road will also increase Rooney's chances of reclaiming his England squad berth ahead of next year's World Cup.  The imminent departure of Rooney could be offset by the arrival of Romelu Lukaku at Old Trafford, with senior United sources hopeful the £75million deal will be completed by the end of the week.  Lukaku, 24, is holidaying with Paul Pogba in Los Angeles and could rendezvous with his United teammates after they arrive in California on Sunday.

Everton transfers: Josh Bowler hopes to bring excitement in final third
Blues seal deal for young winger from QPR
By Chris Beesley
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
New Everton winger Josh Bowler has declared that he hopes to bring excitement in the final third after completing his move from QPR.  The 18-year-old wide man has penned a three-year deal with the Blues following a rapid rise in recent months.  Everton are believed to have paid around £1.5million up front with up to £2.5million in add ons in a deal that could eventually be worth £4million.
A graduate of the west London club’s Academy system, Bowler only signed his first professional contract with the Rs back in March and has just 21 minutes of first team action under his belt, coming on as a substitute in their final game of last season – a 4-0 defeat at Norwich City.   Bowler is expected to start with the Blues Premier League 2-winning Under-23s squad and he said: “I’m really excited to join Everton – it’s a fantastic opportunity for me.  “This is a club on the up at every level. I can’t wait to get started, meet the other lads and begin working with David Unsworth.  “I’m a direct player, I feel like I can bring excitement in the final third and this is the perfect place for me to continue my education and development.”   Hailing from Chertsey in Surrey – 18 miles south west of central London – Bowler is a left-footed midfielder who can also operate on the right flank.  He joins Nathangelo Markelo, Boris Mathis and the returning loan signing Anton Donkor as recruits this summer for Everton’s second string.

Chelsea match £75million bid for Everton striker Romelu Lukaku - report
Claims that Premier League champions have entered the race to take Blues marksman back to Stamford Bridge
By Chris Beesley
7 JUL 2017 Liverpool Echo
Chelsea have made a stunning offer to match Manchester United's £75million bid for Everton striker Romelu Lukaku say the Telegraph.  It is reported that the Premier League champions will not match the agent fees that Mino Raiola would get from the Blues frontman going to Old Trafford, leaving the Belgium international with a tough decision to make.   Lukaku must now decide whether now decide whether to press ahead with his move to United that had been set up by Raiola or go against his agent as it is understand that the Londoners believe the player himself would rather sign for them. Antonio Conte's side are now facing an anxious wait to see whether Lukaku is prepared to demand a return to the capital rather than undergo a planned United medical tonight although United chiefs remain confident of completing a deal in time for the 24-year-old to join them for their US tour on Sunday.  Lukaku, who began his English career with Chelsea in 2011 having joined them from Anderlecht, was widely tipped to return to Stamford Bridge this summer before the proposed switch to United was revealed on Thursday.  He failed to score in any of his 15 first team games for them and was loaned out to both West Bromwich Albion and Everton before being sold to the Blues for £28million in 2014 – by current United boss Jose Mourinho.






























July 2017 - Week 1 (1st - 7th)

All News Articles throughout each month.....

Everton Independent Research!