Transfer Window Review: Everton

The Toffees have started slowly this season, failing to win any of their opening three games, so with the transfer window shut Goal takes a look at Roberto Martinez's squad
By Alex Young

With the transfer window over and Everton's squad confirmed until January, Goal assesses the lay of the land at Goodison Park after the Toffees undertook club-record levels of spending in their bid to improve on last season's fifth-place finish.

The headline-grabbing, club-record-smashing £28 million purchase of Romelu Lukaku from Chelsea is the obvious candidate for best signing.

The striker scored 15 goals in 31 top-flight outings while on loan last season as the club recorded a best-ever points haul since the formation of the Premier League and booked a return to the Europa League in the process.

The odd eyebrow may have been raised at the Belgian's price tag but Roberto Martinez will know he has signed a striker who is already familiar with his style of play and therefore will need no bedding-in period.

Lukaku showed last season he can both lead the line on his own - with the likes of Kevin Miralles and Steven Naismith in support - while the option of fielding the 21-year-old in tandem with Samuel Eto'o can provide a different approach off the bench.


Following Gerard Deulofeu's move back to Barcelona - and then loan to Sevilla - Christian Atsu has been brought in from Chelsea to fill the void created by the winger's departure.

Whereas Deulofeu was afforded only a bit-part role, though still boasted impressive stats, Atsu is considered a rather more polished addition to the squad with 26 international caps with Ghana to his name and past experience in the Eredivisie and at Porto.

At Vitesse, Atsu created on average at least two chances for his team-mates every game - only Kevin Mirallas can come anywhere close to that when looking at positional rivals

However, the Premier League is obviously a more intense test for the 22-year-old and regularly displacing the likes of Mirallas, Aiden McGeady and Steven Naismith will be tough, but the injury to Ross Barkley will likely afford him more opportunity to impress.


In truth, Everton were not linked with many players during the transfer window, with Roberto Martinez securing the permanent futures of Barry and Lukaku before Muhamed Besic and Samuel Eto'o came on board and Christian Atsu was secured on loan. Only Tottenham signed less players for their first team.

One player which did catch the eye was Andres Guardado - who recently left Valencia for a loan spell with PSV.

The 27-year-old made his name in Europe at Deportivo, earning positive reviews during a five-year spell that eventually resulted in a move to Valencia in 2012.

However, the left-sided player who can also play along the entire flank, struggled to hold down a regular starting berth at the Mestalla.

Guardado is adept in an advanced role - despite intially starting his career as a full-back in Mexico - and impressed at the World Cup for his native country.

With Deulofeu departing, Guardado could have supplied cover on the wing with Christian Atsu and would have proven an astute deal, as his temporary move to the Eredivisie proves.


Gerard Deulofeu was perhaps one of the more surprising success stories of last season after arriving from Barcelona on loan.

Very much a raw talent at just 20 years of age, the winger stepped up to the rigours of the Premier League and played a part in six goals in 25 appearances and created a further nine chances for his team-mates despite niggling injury concerns.

To put those figures in comparison with more senior members of Everton's squad, James McCarthy, Steven Naismith, Steven Pienaar and Seamus Coleman all provided less despite playing at least twice as much as Deulofeu - in some cases over four times as many minutes.

Christian Atsu is Deulofeu's replacement and with it, as detailed above, comes similar questions over his ability to perform in England's top flight after a relatively successful spell at Vitesse in the Eredivisie.

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