Everton’s busy summer has seen them bring in many players in different positions, including two strikers in Sandro Ramirez and Wayne Rooney.
However, as Romelu Lukaku is so difficult to replace, it is clear Ronald Koeman wants at least one more, and recent speculation, as reported by Sky Sports among others, is that his attention has turned to Danny Welbeck from Arsenal.
Here is why Everton should avoid the Arsenal forward.
The most obvious negative to Danny Welbeck is his injury history. He is clearly a talented player, but one whose career has been devastated by serious knee problems, beginning in 2009 and flaring up again in the 2014/15 season.
Since then he has struggled to get a consistent run in the Arsenal team. His injuries have not looked like stopping and signing Welbeck now would be risking signing a player never at full fitness.
His injury history has had another effect, and that is seen when he gets on the pitch. Pace was a key part of his game, but the constant damage to his knees have already, and will further, curtail his mobility.
Perhaps he could adapt his style, but should Everton really sign a player hoping he can adapt, rather than a player at the peak of his powers?
Welbeck will inevitably be an overpriced player. He is English, therefore helping Arsenal fulfil the English player quota, and he plays for a top six club that have no need to sell.
Arsenal do not need the money themselves, and they know that Everton have plenty to spend. Welbeck is also only 26-years-old and Arsenal can still hold on to him for a few more years before cashing out.
Finally, the player has not expressed a desire to leave the club, and so this puts even less pressure on Arsenal to sell.
Realistically Arsenal could ask for huge money for an injury prone player, one who would not be match-fit for the start of the season. Would that money be better spent elsewhere?
Offers nothing unique
Do Everton need a player like Danny Welbeck? It is hard to imagine what he would offer to the Toffees that they do not already have themselves.
Welbeck is certainly comfortable on the ball, and often displays deft touches and smart footwork. However, Everton have technically gifted players in abundance, especially in the forward areas.
The arrivals of Davy Klaassen and Rooney, as well as the incoming Gylfi Sigurdsson, means the club is chock full of these kinds of players. Everton do not need Welbeck for that.
Koeman would prefer a target man above all, which makes sense given Everton’s proficiency from crossing.
Welbeck has never been that kind of player, having always been direct and better suited running at defenders. While not awful in the air, he has certainly never been classified as a target man, and Koeman will be well aware of that.
So, if Welbeck is not the signing that Everton need, who are some better alternatives?
1 Olivier Giroud
The Frenchman is Koeman’s number one target. This has rumbled on for several weeks now, at times looking like a deal was almost complete, to now looking like the player does not want to leave Arsenal.
Giroud would be the perfect target man, the missing piece of the puzzle that is Everton’s front three.
While playing less and less for Arsenal in the last couple of seasons, his goal scoring ability has remained. Last season he averaged a goal every 100 minutes in the Premier League, which only Harry Kane bettered.
Giroud is strong, holds up the ball well and is aerially one of the best strikers in the Premier League.
What could make Everton’s attempts to sign him easier is that the player seems unsettled, unhappy with his lack of game time.
Now at 30, Arsenal may feel it is worth selling this summer while they can still get a decent sum, and it would not be surprising if he was cheaper than Welbeck.
2 Christian Benteke
Also linked to Everton in this transfer window, the Crystal Palace striker is of a similar mould to Olivier Giroud.
While not the most mobile striker, his aerial ability is almost unmatched, and he scored an impressive 15 goals in the Premier League last season for a Palace side that struggled to perform.
However, it will be difficult to prise him away from Crystal Palace and Frank de Boer, who have no reason to sell.
Therefore, the figure being mentioned is close to £40 million, which even in this market is an awful lot of money. But as far as strong target men go, you won’t find many better than Benteke.
3 Moussa Dembele
If Everton want to sign a Welbeck-like player, then they should look no further than Moussa Dembele. Yes, this represents somewhat of a risk, as he is unproven in the Premier League, but no riskier than a constantly-injured player.
Dembele is fast and direct, and showed great variety in the goals he scored for Celtic last season, all 32 of them. He scored some key goals for the Scottish side too, including two against Manchester City in the Champions League and a hat-trick against Celtic’s arch-rivals Rangers.
At just 21, Dembele represents the youngest option, one that Everton could certainly build a team around.
An offer from a side in the Premier League will attract him, and the £30 million that Celtic want for him is payable for a player of his quality. Certainly worth the risk.
Everton have time to sign a striker this summer, with the transfer window still open for the next few weeks, and Koeman certainly has time to negotiate for other, better players than Danny Welbeck.
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