COMMENT By Will Butcher
Everton should abandon any summer transfer plans to turn Enner Valencia’s loan deal from West Ham into a permanent one.
Coming to Merseyside with a promising reputation after he moved to West Ham for £12million, the 27-year-old has struggled to have an impact during his season-long loan at Goodison Park.
With a decision yet to be made on his Everton future, manager Ronald Koeman should look elsewhere for back-up to Romelu Lukaku. Here are three reasons why:
Form in front of goal
Scoring just one goal for Koeman’s side in 21 league and cup appearances, Valencia has struggled to replicate the kind of form that saw him earn a temporary move to the Toffees in the first place. Brought in to provide cover for Romelu Lukaku as well as offering another option out wide, Valencia has started just six Premier League matches this season as he fails to give Everton the quality required in the final third. A return to West Ham is on the cards for the attacker then, as Koeman is yet to be impressed by his summer signing.
Ecuador international Valencia still has more than two years remaining on his West Ham contract, and the Hammers are likely to want to recuperate as much money as possible that they paid Mexican side Pachuca for the services of the versatile forward. The Toffees’ number 19 cost West Ham £12million back in the summer of 2014 but,Valencia has failed to show he is even worth half of that figure during his time at Goodison Park. Everton would be well advised to scour the market for cheaper, more effective alternatives in the summer.
With Yannick Bolasie closing in on a return from a long-term knee injury and the £11million signing of teenage star Ademola Lookman, manager Koeman has plenty of options out wide available to him. Aaron Lennon and Kevin Mirallas are also options, while Gerard Deulofeu and Aiden McGeady are set to return to Merseyside in the summer as they remain out on loan. The permanent signing of Valencia is not needed, as Everton have more than enough cover to fill the void out wide.
In other Everton transfer news, Tony Cottee must secure a deal for this 23-year-old playmaker.