Everton have reportedly stepped up their efforts to sign 30-year-old Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly, having made a €35 million bid for him.

According to a report by Italian outlet Calciomercato, Everton appear to be keen on signing Kalidou Koulibaly in the summer transfer window. The Toffees have tabled an offer worth €35 million plus add-ons for the 30-year-old Senegalese defender but have been told by Napoli that he is not going anywhere unless their €60 million valuation is met.

Kalidou Koulibaly has progressed leaps and bounds since joining Napoli from KRC Genk in the summer of 2014. Now one of the best defenders on show in Serie A, the 30-year-old has struggled with a few fitness issues in the last couple of seasons but has still maintained his stature within the Italian top-flight.

To date, the Senegalese international has amassed 283 appearances for the Partenopei, chipping in with 11 goals and five assists along the way. However, just as he has been in the last couple of summer transfer windows, Koulibaly is being linked with a possible switch to the Premier League, with Everton showing an interest in him.

The Merseyside club appear to be in the market for a centre-back this summer amid the uncertain future of Yerry Mina. With Michael Keane and Mason Holgate the only other central defenders at Rafael Benitez’s disposal, it is imperative that Everton sign at least one player to bolster the heart of their defence. To that end, Kurt Zouma has been linked with the Toffees.

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In addition, Everton also seem to be seriously interested in signing Clement Lenglet, with a €20 million offer reportedly being formulated. And now, the Premier League outfit have turned their attention towards Koulibaly, who has emerged as a serious target for them.

In fact, there have been suggestions that Everton are hotly pursuing a move for the 30-year-old at the behest of Rafael Benitez, with a €35 million offer being submitted to Napoli. The deal would also entail the Serie A side receiving an additional amount in performance-related bonuses. However, Napoli want a higher sum in exchange for Koulibaly, having slapped a €60 million price tag on him.

What now remains to be seen is if Everton step up their efforts to sign Koulibaly once again by tabling an improved bid for him. If not, it will be interesting to see who the Toffees shift their focus towards next, with a €60 million outlay being a big dent on any club’s budget in the current financial climate.

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