Comment By Richard Parks
Everton would not make a smarter acquisition this summer than PSV Eindhoven technical director Marcel Brands.
He might not put the ball in the back of the net or contribute on the pitch, but his capture would be transformative for a club who are still waiting for lift-off two years after Farhad Moshiri started to pile money into the club.
The Iranian billionaire has not had much bang for his buck so far, with his managerial appointments failing to fire a batch of over-priced and underperforming signings.
Barring a few notable exceptions such as Jordan Pickford and Idrissa Gueye, Everton have got far more wrong than they have right.
Moshiri’s answer is a new recruitment chief who can source hidden gems and find value in a brutally competitive market.
Dutch publication Telesport claim the PSV sporting director is weighing up the offer on the table from the Merseyside giants and will give his answer imminently. The Mirror report today (Sunday) that Brands is close to saying ‘yes’ to the Merseysiders.
Telesport claim that Everton majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri regards Brands as the ‘dream’ candidate to ignite a team that has not provided value for money after the huge investment.
If he did take the post, it would be curtains for current Everton director of football Steve Walsh, who has failed to re-produce his Leicester City magic despite working with a far bigger budget.
Brands, 56, has an impressive record in Dutch football, at PSV, who have just won their third title in four years, and former club AZ Alkmaar, and a towering reputation in his homeland. His skills are his eye for talent and ability to transform a club.
Those who have worked with him also talk of his brilliant people and communication skills, and his understanding of how to get the best out of those on the payroll.
His transfer record at PSV has been impressive, signing the likes of Gini Wijnaldum, Kevin Strootman, Dries Mertens and Davy Propper before developing them and selling on for huge profits.
The question is, can Brands make the same impact in the Premier League, where the competition is on a completely different level to what he has been used to?
If he can, he will be a hero forever at Goodison, where the fans are waiting for the spark who can make the club a regular top-six challenger.