Everton are reportedly considering a cut-price swoop for soon-to-be free agent Sean Longstaff in the January transfer window.
According to the Liverpool Echo, Merseyside giants Everton remain keen on Newcastle United midfielder Sean Longstaff as we head into the January transfer window. The exit of James Rodriguez is expected to ease Everton’s concerns regarding financial fair play. If so, it can hand manager Rafael Benitez the opportunity to add to his squad in January.
The Spaniard has enjoyed a good start to life at Goodison Park, winning three of his five games in charge in the Premier League. However, the Carabao Cup loss to Queens Park Rangers earlier this week showcased the deficiencies in the Toffees squad, especially in the middle of the park.
The duo of Tom Davies and Andre Gomes struggled to impose itself on the field and struggled to make an impact at Loftus Road. If Rodriguez’s exit wasn’t enough, both Fabian Delph and Jean-Philippe Gbamin’s struggle with injuries have limited Benitez’s options in the middle of the park.
With finances at a premium, Benitez is now looking to raid his former side Newcastle United for Sean Longstaff. The 23-year-old is currently in the final year of his contract and will be available for a cut-price deal this winter. It was under Benitez that Longstaff made his senior bow for the Magpies. The Spaniard has a good opinion of the player and appears keen to rekindle the relationship on Merseyside.
A central midfielder who can impress both in attack and defence, the Englishman can develop into a dependable player for Everton in the years to come. With 59 Premier League appearances to his name, he is already experienced in the English top-flight and will be ready to perform from the word go.
The Toffees were keen on landing Longstaff earlier this summer but could not reach an agreement with Newcastle. Everton were open to swapping Longstaff for Davies, who remains under contract until the summer of 2023.
Davies was not keen on calling time on his Everton career, and the Toffees believed he had a higher market value than the Newcastle star. Six months on, Benitez could have a better shot at landing his man.
The threat of losing Longstaff for free next summer could give Everton the advantage in negotiations. Whether Newcastle are willing to sell the player on the cheap or prove a point by letting him run out his contract remains to be seen.
A rather nifty player, Longstaff has the traits needed to become a regular in the English top flight. Benitez has a reputation for making the best use of his resources and could help the Englishman take the next step in his development. Whether a reunion is on the cards or not remains to be seen.