By Will Butcher

Everton could rival Southampton for the signature of Watford’s Etienne Capoue as they attempt to solve their midfield dilemma, according to a report.

The Telegraph claims that the 28-year-old central midfielder could be persuaded to leave Vicarage Road for a more prestigious club this month and tip Ronald Koeman’s Toffees as one of two possible destinations.

However, they will have to do battle with Claude Puel’s Saints if they are to make a move for the former Tottenham ace, as both clubs take note of his unexpected goalscoring form.

Currently leading the Hornets’ goalscoring charts ahead of Troy Deeney and Idion Oghalo, Capoue has struck five times against the likes of Chelsea, Manchester United and Leicester.

Everton had been looking to sign United’s Morgan Schneiderlin this month, but had a bid of around £19million rejected for the France international.

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According to the BBC, Everton will remain undeterred in their pursuit of Schneiderlin while also targeting his Old Trafford teammate Memphis Depay.

But the Toffees could now turn to Capoue after Jose Mourinho foiled their attempts in securing the signature of Schneiderlin earlier this month.

Football Insider verdict:

Watford’s number 29 would be a top signing for Everton, who are set to lose Idrissa Gueye to the African Cup of Nations. Ireland international James McCarthy is still nursing a muscle injury, while forgotten duo Darren Gibson and Muhamed Besic have managed just one senior appearance between them. It leaves Koeman thin the midfield department, with just veteran Gareth Barry and Tom Cleverley as senior players able to fill the hole in front of the defence. Signing Capoue would bolster their midfield ranks, as well as giving the Toffees an added dimension in the goalscoring department as they look to share the pressure currently placed on Romelu Lukaku’s shoulders.

In other Everton transfer news, Charlton boss Karl Robinson has made this huge statement about Ademola Lookman.