By Harvey Byrne
Espanyol have joined the race for Everton target Juan Mata, according to a report.
The Mirror claim that the La Liga side are eyeing a move for the Spaniard, who is also a target for the Goodison Park club.
As reported on Football Insider, Mata is believed to have been one of the players new Blues manager Koeman has picked out to lead his revolution at Goodison Park.
However, it is understood that the Barcelona-based outfit are also keeping tabs on the attacking midfielder and they plan to offer him a return to his homeland should Jose Mourinho decide to move him on again.
The 28-year-old bagged 10 goals and 11 assists in 54 games in all competitions last season as he helped guide United to a fifth-place finish in the Premier League, but his side missed out on the Champions League places on goal difference to arch rivals Manchester City.
The former Chelsea ace arrived in Manchester in January 2014 for a then club-record fee of £37million and endured mixed fortunes under both David Moyes and Louis van Gaal at the club.
Mata is not believed to be in Jose Mourinho’s plans next season, after the Portuguese boss sold him to United in January 2014 during his second spell at Chelsea.
The former Real Madrid academy star still has two years left on his current contract but could be tempted by a move to Everton in search of regular football in his preferred position.
In other Everton transfer news, Ronald Koeman met up with Manchester City’s director of football last week to discuss a deal for defender John Stones.