By Will Butcher
Everton and West Ham are just two names on a list of 15 clubs watching Besiktas’ midfield maestro Oguzhan Ozyakup on Thursday, according to a report.
Turkish outlet CNN Turk claim a whole host of Europe’s biggest clubs will be in attendance at the Vodafone Arena to watch the Europa League tie between Besiktas and Lyon on Thursday.
It is believed that clubs will be keeping a close eye on 24-year-old Ozyakup, with Everton and West Ham accompanied by English sides Aston Villa and Southampton.
German outfits Borussia Dortmund, Borussia Mönchengladbach, Schalke, Hannover, Stuttgart, Wolfsburg will be watching, while PSV Eindhoven, FC Twente, Inter Milan, Atletico Madrid and Anderlecht have also sent their spies to Turkey.
The report also states that Arsenal, Man United, Roma and Sevilla are keen on the Holland-born midfielder, who has a contract with Besiktas until the summer of 2018.
With interest in Ozyakup reportedly rife, Everton and West Ham must move quickly if they are to pounce for the Besiktas skipper.
The 25-time international has made 32 appearances in all competitions for the Turkish giants this season, scoring four times and laying on another six goals in assists.
Interest in the former Arsenal midfielder is not new, with the Express claiming earlier this month that the Gunners were rivalling Tottenham for Ozaykup’s signature.
Football Insider verdict:
Showing leadership and maturity that is normally well beyond a midfielder at the age of 24, it is of no surprise that Ozyakup is interesting a number of European sides ahead of the summer window. Everton, though, do not need a central midfielder and would be wise to look elsewhere this summer. The breakthrough of Tom Davies and January signing Morgan Schneiderlin have already added to a list of stars that include James McCarthy, Gareth Barry, Idrissa Gueye and Muhamed Besic. On the other hand, Slaven Bilic could do with the signing of Ozyakup, with Havard Nordtveit struggling in his first season back in England. With only Mark Noble, Cheikhou Kouyate and Pedro Obiang as his other options in the middle of the park, the Turkish star would prove a top signing.
In other Everton transfer news, the Toffees could complete a cut-price deal for this 27-year-old forward.