By Danny Wright

26th Jul, 2017 | 8:04pm

Everton plot bargain raid of PL rivals for international defender - report

By Danny Wright

Everton are plotting to raid their Premier League rivals West Ham for James Collins, according to a report.

The Irish Sun claims that the Toffees are joined by Stoke and Crystal Palace in their pursuit of the experienced 33-year-old.

It is understood that Ronald Koeman is confident of completing a bargain deal worth £2million for the 50-times Wales international defender, as he is now in the final year of his contract at West Ham.

The report adds that Slaven Bilic could be inclined to dispense of Collins’ services this summer unless he can work out a fresh deal for him.

However the exciting deals that have already taken place on Merseyside this summer could be enough for Collins to consider ending his second spell with the Hammers.

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Everton have already added Michael Keane and Cuco Martina to their defence this transfer window, but the Irish Sun reports that Koeman could be on the lookout for another stopper to fill the void left by the crocked Ramiro Funes Mori.

Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaassen, Wayne Rooney and Sandro Ramirez have also been snapped up by the Blues this summer, who have not been afraid of spending big following the big-money sale of Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United.

Collins’ potential cut-price move to Goodison Park would come as somewhat of a shock considering the money spent by Everton so far this year.

He made 24 appearances across all competitions for the Hammers last season, and has earned over 200 for the London club during his two spells there.

Football Insider Verdict

Buying Collins would be a very good piece of business for Everton, who still need to make some minor additions to complete their squad. Koeman doesn’t have very many options at the back so a relatively small fee on an experienced Premier League stopper like Collins could be a shrewd buy, especially if they just offer him a one-year contract with the option of a year’s extension at the end. That way the Welshman could still have a future with the Toffees even if he doesn’t feature all too much next season. There’s still over two weeks before the league season starts, and it seems Everton are yet to slow down in their mammoth summer overhaul.

In other Everton news, Koeman has declared interest in signing this Premier League ace.

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