By Kevin Phillips

20th Jun, 2021 | 12:44pm

Phillips impressed by reported update on Everton agreeing Nunes deal

Matheus Nunes would give Everton a completely different option in midfield.

That is according to ex-Premier League hitman Kevin Phillips, speaking exclusively to Football Insider after the Daily Mail reported on 18th June that the Toffees are closing in on the 22-year-old Sporting Lisbon man.

The Brazilian’s contract expires in 2025 and Everton are understood to be pursuing an £18million deal.

The mobile midfielder is accomplished in defensive, central and attacking midfield roles and featured 31 times for Sporting in their 2020-21 title-winning side.

Everton used Allan, Tom Davies, Abdoulaye Doucoure, Andre Gomes and James Rodriguez in midfield last term.

Phillips claimed that Nunes would give something to the team that none of those players can provide.

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“They’ve got some good midfield players,” he told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams.

“But it’s always hard to find a midfield player who can get you out of trouble and move up the pitch with the ball.

“Rodriguez isn’t really a ball carrier, he’s more of a playmaker who finds those passes and those through-balls.

“So maybe he is the type of box-to-box player they need who can get you up and down the pitch. They’ve got Doucoure but he’s more of a defensive midfielder.

“He can travel with the ball but he’s not a box-to-box. So maybe that is the kind of route they need to go down to get into that top-six.”

Nunes has featured 49 times in total for Sporting after signing from Portuguese lower league side Estoril in January 2019.

Those appearances have yielded three goals and three assists.

In other news, Rafa Benitez’s “shrewd” plan could keep Everton “fans onside” amid key update.