Everton have found themselves yet again struggling to retain their Premier League status this season and Sean Dyche will not only be working hard to secure survival over the remainder of the campaign but also looking at the ways he can improve the squad this summer.
The Toffees are currently 15th in the league table, two points clear of the bottom three, with just 11 games remaining to turn things around and there will surely be a huge focus on strengthening the attacking threat this summer considering the side have the second-fewest amount of goals scored (20) so far.
It is no secret that Everton have struggled over the last 18 months in front of goal with Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s ongoing injury issues, Richarlison’s move to Tottenham Hotspur in the summer and more recently, Anthony Gordon’s shock exit during the January transfer window, all of which have contributed to the troubles the side have faced.
Indeed, the powerbrokers at Goodison Park did acquire the services of Neal Maupay and Dwight McNeil in the summer, however, the attacking duo have failed to make the powerful impact needed to avoid another brush with potential relegation again this season – scoring a combined four goals so far.
As a result, the signing of a clinical and experienced goal-scorer is desperately needed whether the Toffees remain in the top flight or drop into the Championship for the first time ever during the Premier League era and continue to be linked with numerous forwards despite their fate uncertain.
One player who has been touted with a move to the blue side of Merseyside this week is Middlesbrough striker Chuba Akpom with talkSPORT transfer expert Alex Crook naming Everton as one of the potential suitors.
Who could replace Neal Maupay at Everton?
The 27-year-old could replace Maupay at Goodison Park as the gem has been a sensation in the Championship over the campaign so far and is not only the highest-scoring player in the league (21) this season but also broken club records – becoming the first player to score more than 20 goals for Middlesbrough in 33 years.
Over 29 appearances so far, Akpom – who the Northern Echo’s Scott Wilson claimed “can’t stop scoring” – has scored 22 goals, registered one assist and created one big chance, as well as averaging 2.6 shots on goal, 1.4 shots on target and 5.2 duels won per game, proving that he is in incredible form in front of goal.
The striker has earned consistent huge praise from his current manager over the season so far with Michael Carrick revealing what he believes is the key to the remarkable form that Akpom has found himself in:
“He seems to be bigger, quicker, playing free, you can’t underestimate the power of the mind. It can go the other way when you’re not playing so well, when players seem almost slower and lethargic because the mental state is different. Chuba is in a terrific place at the minute, backed by the whole group.”
If Everton could secure the signing of Akpom this summer and he can continue his outstanding goalscoring next season, there is no doubt that he would be a massively valuable asset to Dyche in his pursuit to improve the attacking threat at Goodison and would be a huge upgrade on current striker Maupay.
Over 20 Premier League performances, the Frenchman has only found the back of the net once, registering no assists and creating zero big chances, as well as only averaging 0.7 shots on target per game, along with five ‘big chances’ missed.
With that being said, it would be a no-brainer for the Everton hierarchy to snap up the services of Akpom ahead of next season as they could finally find the key to consistency in front of goal.
Maupay has not been able to provide enough quality in front of goal throughout the seasons so far and the Boro marksman’s form in the Championship indicates that he has the potential to make the step up and offer more at the top end of the pitch.
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