Everton have reportedly been asked to fork out €25 million to secure the services of 23-year-old French attacker Jonathan Ikone.
According to Fichajes, Everton are keen to sign Lille winger Jonathan Ikone as they look to bolster their attacking ranks in the upcoming transfer window. The Toffees now know how much they will have to pay to land the 23-year-old French winger, who has been slapped with a €25 million price tag by the Ligue 1 outfit.
After sealing a £4.5 million transfer move from Paris Saint-Germain to Lille in 2018, Jonathan Ikone has made huge strides in recent years. The 23-year-old has been an explosive presence for Les Dogues, making 143 appearances and contributing with 16 goals and 25 assists.
Ikone was one of the star member’s of the Lille side that shocked everyone by clinching the Ligue 1 title ahead of French giants PSG last term, producing seven goals and seven assists from 48 appearances in all competitions. He has not had the best of the starts to the current season with just two goals in 18 games, but his gradual progression has not gone unnoticed either, with West Ham, AC Milan and Everton keen on signing him.
Ikone’s contract at Stade Pierre Mauroy expires in the summer of 2023, and it is understood that the player would not be interested in renewing his deal at the club and instead would be looking to secure a transfer move elsewhere, sparking strong interest from Everton.
The interest from the Toffees makes a lot of sense in spite of the fact that they signed two wingers in Andros Townsend and Demarai Gray in the last summer transfer window. After a strong start to the season, injuries to their key players in Abdoulaye Doucouré, Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin derailed their claim for European spots.
A player with Ikone’s pace and flair who can play in multiple attacking positions could prove to be a shrewd addition for Rafael Benitez & co., considering that the Blues lack depth in several attacking areas reflected by a rusty Salomon Rondon bustling up top without any success. Ikone would not only compete for a spot on the flanks but can also comfortably fill in the vacated attacking midfielder role following James Rodriguez’s exit.
However, Everton will need to pay a decent transfer fee for the 23-year-old, who is valued at €25 million by Lille, which could complicate matters with Financial Fair Play limiting the Toffees in the transfer market. What now remains to be seen is whether the club hierarchy sanctions a move for Ikone in the upcoming winter window or will move for other alternatives.