By Will Butcher
Everton are keeping tabs on Anderlecht midfielder Leander Dendoncker after Toffees spies watched him play on Sunday evening, according to a report.
Belgian newspaper HLN claim scouts were in attendance during Anderlecht’s 2-0 win over Zulte Waregem, as 22-year-old star Dendoncker impressed at the base of his side’s midfield.
It is believed that La Liga outfit Sevilla are also keen on the 6ft 2in star, but the report states that Ronald Koeman’s Merseyside outfit may well be the best option for Dendoncker.
Everton are also supposedly keen on Dendoncker’s midfield partner Youri Tielemans, but a move to England is unlikely according to the report.
Captaining the side on occasion despite his young age, Dendoncker has made a huge 54 league and cup appearances this season as he remains as one of the first names on the team sheet.
Dendoncker can play at either centre-back or in defensive midfield, but is better known for his role in the latter as he helps his side to sit at the top of the Jupiler League play-offs.
He has scored five times this season, including in the Europa League quarter-final first leg against Man United.
However, the two-time Belgium international has a contract with Anderlecht until the summer of 2021 and is likely to require a hefty transfer fee considering his age and importance to the squad.
Football Insider verdict:
There is no doubt that Dendoncker is one of the best up-and-coming midfield talents in Europe at this moment in time. His intelligence in the middle of the park is second to none, while showing maturity and a range of passing that is expected of someone a lot older then him. Most Premier League clubs would benefit from the signing of the youngster, but Everton must consider if signing the Anderlecht star is actually a priority. The Toffees have an abundance of central midfield options with the likes of Idrissa Gueye, Gareth Barry, Tom Davies, James McCarthy, Morgan Schneiderlin and Muhamed Besic. Koeman may find that spending his transfer budget on areas that require improvement, such as in goal or at centre-back, may benefit the squad more.
In other Everton transfer news, the Toffees are preparing a £9million swoop for this goal machine.