Inside Everton transfer window story as Farhad Moshiri delivers despite Marcel Brands irony

Deadline days don’t usually involve the signing of a new manager, but it’s been a bumpy few weeks at Everton.

In fact, it was a tumultuous month.

It was the busiest January, in terms of senior signings, the Blues have ever seen with five new arrivals, while the sale of Lucas Digne and the hiring and firing of managers only add to the frenzy.

Let’s say it again: five new signings, the sale of the team’s first-choice left-back after a falling out with the boss, the sacking of Rafa Benitez and, then, the appointment of Frank Lampard as a replacement. Spanish.

All within 31 days. Add to that an FA Cup win in extra time and three league defeats that leave Everton looking nervously at the horrors behind them, along with protests from fans, and a leadership contestant taking to Sky Sports to talk about his interview, and it’s safe to say there hasn’t been a January like this, in the modern era.

Maybe never.

Everton were experiencing turbulence as they headed into the month and there was little respite until the window closed.

Indeed, the Blues ended up piling up too much in 31 days and gave themselves in the first hour of February to complete the signing of Dele Alli, via a deal sheet.

A hugely important game with Newcastle United looms on the horizon but, at least for the next few days, the Blues can enjoy some calm. Well, I hope.

Deadline day went much to plan as, after officially confirming Lampard’s appointment on a two-and-a-half-year deal, Everton then sealed the loan signing of Donny van de Beek from Manchester United .

The Blues were determined to bolster their midfield options with Van de Beek and another. The one more turned out to be Alli, who has joined permanently from Tottenham Hotspur, in a deal that won’t see Everton pay a transfer fee (expected at £10million) until at least the season next, once he has reached 20 games for the club.

Several names were attached to Everton throughout the day, but while they considered a loan move for Luka Jovic from Real Madrid, the priority was always the midfield.

A source had even suggested on the morning of deadline day that the Blues had held loan talks for Barcelona outcast Ousmane Dembele, but the suggestion was played down by the Goodison bosses. The focus was on the midfielders.

And Jean-Philippe Gbamin, who was told he could leave the club, would stay following the coaching change.

Alli’s arrival would be the last deal for the first team on the last day of the window.

Thirty days earlier Everton were knocking on the door to confirm the £17m signing of Mykolenko from Dynamo Kyiv.

The left-back was named as Digne’s replacement on January 1, who was certain to leave after a clash of opinions with Benitez.

Newcastle, Chelsea and a host of others have shown interest in the French defender, but it was Aston Villa on January 13 who paid £25million for his services.

There was no love lost between Benitez and Digne and the mockery from some inside Goodison nine days later when Villa arrived in town suggested the same.

The throwing of an object by a supporter, later arrested and charged with assault, at Digne and other Villa players, however, was a shameful escalation of the general mood simmering around the club.



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Lampard’s arrival, and the need for a fresh start to revive Everton’s season, will hopefully lift the mood, starting with Brentford’s visit on Saturday.

All eyes will be on the 43-year-old’s squad selection with Mykolenko and Nathan Patterson the second player to come through the door for Glasgow Rangers, both ejected from the squad for this Villa game by goalkeeper Duncan Ferguson.

Twenty-eight million pounds of new signings, left out of the match day squad, just weeks after their arrival.

The loss that afternoon quickly changed the club’s intention of giving Big Dunc the “games to come” down to one.

Ferguson was interviewed for the job but lost out and is still part of the backroom staff under Lampard.

Anwar El Ghazi would take the opposite direction to Digne, on loan for the rest of the season.

The Dutch international wasn’t part of Digne’s deal but he would ultimately act as a counterweight of sorts.

Villa needed to offload his wages for the remainder of the campaign, Everton were looking to add a winger and so a deal was agreed.

Benitez insisted he had the final say on his signing but, it is understood, El Ghazi had not been a player on the manager’s radar.

Given that Mykolenko and Patterson were both players identified by former director of football Marcel Brands, and that El Ghazi was presented as an option to Benitez, this left the Spaniard under pressure without the protection of having was supported by his signatures, at this point.

Newcastle midfielder Sean Longstaff would certainly have been that, but Benitez wouldn’t last long enough in the job to try and get that deal done.

Benitez was sacked the day after the sad defeat to Norwich City and with that, the club’s interest in Van de Beek was rekindled.

Benitez had doubts over signing and pushed back when Brands presented the 24-year-old as a viable addition in January, but the club provided Lampard with a list of realistic additions, how soon he remained, and the man of Manchester United was one. of them.

Ali too.

It has been suggested that Jesse Lingard was also seen as a potential target, but even before United put the brakes on his departure, sources close to the player said he had little interest in joining Everton this month .

The irony that three of the five players Everton signed this month were targets hammered home by Brands and his recruitment team will not be lost on anyone linked to the Blues.

Brands, it will be recalled, left the club on December 6, citing a “clear difference in vision and direction” at the club.

Three players he advocated moves for are now part of a team led not by Benitez, who was in charge when he left, but by Lampard, Everton’s sixth new permanent manager in as many years.

The hunt for a replacement for Benitez, following the Carrow Road disaster, immediately led Everton power brokers to an old friend, as they tried to rob Roberto Martinez of his job in Belgium.

Martinez was in the frame to fill the void left by Carlo Ancelotti last summer, but Farhad Moshiri decided Benitez was a better choice and ultimately ignored the support the Catalan had from other members of the hierarchy. Everton.

But Belgium dug in and, in a World Cup year, refused to let Martinez out to return to lead the Blues. The former boss’s lawsuit has left many fans confused and worried.

The other names on the first shortlist, while far more palatable to most Evertonians, spoke of a club unsure which direction they wanted to go and there was no clear strategy.

Ferguson, who was named caretaker boss three days after Benitez was fired, is believed to be under consideration, as are Lampard and Wayne Rooney.

Rooney, as he confirmed last week, would never be interviewed, declining the opportunity when it was suggested to him, via intermediaries, that Everton would rather revisit their interest in the Derby County boss at the end of the season.

Rooney felt ready for work now. Not in June.

But the idea of ​​an interim manager gained momentum when another name joined the race: Vitor Pereira.

Interviewed in 2013 and reconsidered six years later, before pulling out of the race to stay in China, the Portuguese suddenly had serious momentum behind him and flew to England for interviews.

But many supporters, who were against Martinez’s return, were even more opposed to Pereira’s appointment. The information was that Everton were considering a deal which gave him the job until the end of the season but included the option of a further extension.

Yet many Blues have made it clear that Pereira, who won trophies in Portugal but was also sacked at Fenerbahçe and toppled Munich in 1860, was not the man they wanted.

Even before protesters staged a rally of fans outside Goodison, Moshiri knew the strength of feelings towards the former Porto boss.

It has emerged that Everton have given up on giving him the job.

Cue Lampard’s re-emergence and Pereira’s bizarre decision to discuss his interview with Sky Sports News.

Everton’s managerial search had, officially, become a farce.

But it at least brought some clarity to the proceedings. Lampard was spoken to again and he was now increasingly confident of landing the role. Moshiri, however, insisted on a final round of interviews in London last Friday.

Lampard started the day on top and would not let him down, with the Everton decision-makers deciding that night he was the one they wanted.

On Saturday, talks began over the appearance and composition of his behind-the-scenes staff and, crucially, what business he wanted the club to do before Monday’s 11pm deadline.

And although there was late talk of trying to add a defender to the squad, the Blues were concentrating in the middle of the park, with Van de Beek and Alli joining Lampard’s ranks.

Moshiri, who has been advised by Tim Cahill throughout the leadership search, released a statement earlier today and, among other things, admitted he may have been too “impatient” in the past.

Patience amongst the fans has rightly been thin on the pitch for years and they have been stretched to breaking point throughout an incredible month in the club’s history.

But Blues fans are hoping a positive end to the month, with the signings of two players and a manager on deadline day, is a signal of less chaotic times.

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