By Noel Whelan

5th Jan, 2021 | 4:00pm

'Really Exciting for Everton' - Exclusive: Whelan wowed by 'Huge' Echo update

Noel Whelan claimed it would be “huge” if Everton can tie Lucas Digne down to a new long-term contract.

The former Leeds United striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, said the 27-year-old has “immense ability” and plays the wing-back role “perfectly” for the Toffees.

The Liverpool Echo claim that the France international is “closing in” on a new deal with talks understood to be progressing well between both parties.

Digne still has two-and-a-half years remaining on his current contract at Goodison Park, having penned a five-year deal upon his arrival from Barcelona in August 2018.

The left-back has not featured for Carlo Ancelotti’s side since November after he sustained an ankle injury in training.

When asked by Football Insider for his thoughts on the club potentially tying Digne down to a new deal, Whelan said: “That would be huge.

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“A player at the right age with immense ability. He can play that wing-back role perfectly. He has quality from wide-areas and from set-pieces as well.

“It looks like his long-term future will be at Everton and I am pretty sure he wants to be part of what Ancelotti is building there because he is assembling a great team. It is looking really exciting.

“I very much doubt that they will stop in January, if there is a player they can bring in Ancelotti will do all he can to get them through the door. Right now, Everton are in and around the mix for the Champions League places.”   

In other news, it can be REVEALED that a defender has played his last game for Everton after a big development over the weekend.