Everton have had a good season. They managed to secure fifth place and have shown themselves as a quality team and become a real force in the Premier League. With the introduction of some exciting talent the squad has shown some real potential in the League and almost managed to achieve a Champions League spot which would have previously been thought out of reach.
Roberto Martinez has been a revelation at Goodison Park with a new free flowing mentality that has given the fans hope of a new chapter in Everton's future and the belief that he could take them to the next level.
This article will look at the current squad and identify its strengths and weaknesses that it holds rather than speculating on potential transfers.
Tim Howard finished the season with 15 clean sheets and have provided Everton with a reliable shot stopper although his age provides a potential issue. Joel Robles has not yet had the opportunity to prove himself as the successor for Howard but this season should give a better picture of his ability.
Seamus Coleman has been a great player for the Toffees this season and was named in BBC Sport's team of the season. He showed his offensive and defensive capabilities in the past season and has, understandably, attracted a lot of attention from other clubs.
However, cover in this position is weak and often relies on other defenders playing out of their main position and so may need to be looked at by Martinez this summer.
Leighton Baines is a key player for Everton, providing experience and talent and has played a key role in Everton's chase of European qualification. As cover they have Bryan Oviedo who showed promise before getting injured in January and beyond that Luke Garbutt provides alternative cover.
Phil Jagielka has been a very reliable player for the Toffees and as captain has made sure his team held onto the 5th place and helped them mount a challenge for the Champions League. He is a very important player for the team and they certainly missed him when he was out of the team because of injury.
Sylvain Distin has a lot of experience in the Premier League but has at times looked out of place at the top of the table. However, due to Jagielka's injury it has given young John Stones an opportunity which he has taken and shown himself to be a great talent, worthy of a first team place. Therefore this is not a position that should take priority with Everton's transfer strategy.
James McCarthy has performed very well this season and has fitted into the Everton set up very well with Gareth Barry stating that he is one of the best midfielders he has played with. At only 23 he has shown himself as very mature for his age and looks like he will progress into a great player. Darron Gibson has not played much this season but is known from history to be a safe, reliable player and provides great cover for Martinez.
Leon Osman is another player who provides the team with great experience and has really helped this season to develop the young talent and has provided stability when it was needed. However he is the only true central midfielder and so to improve the flexibility of the squad, he may want to expand this section.
Everton have not had to look further than Ross Barkley with regards to this position. He has been a very influential player for the Toffees this season. He has sparkled under Roberto Martinez's leadership and system and has demonstrated that he has serious potential.
Steven Naismith has often played in this position as well and has been used to great effect to change the game. He provides a great alternative to Barkley and so Martinez can adapt his strategy depending on the opposition.
Kevin Mirallas is a player with great ability and is a great player for Everton to have in their squad, he finished the season with eight goals and eight assists and proved an important part of the Everton team. Aidan McGeady has not had a successful season in the Premier League, failing to register a single goal and only one assist in 16 games.
He showed that he has a lot of talent when playing for Spartak Moscow but failed to carry the form into the Everton games. As cover for these positions they have Steven Pienaar who also has not had a productive season and with his advanced age Martinez may need to look into more depth in these positions before the start of the new season.
This is Everton's main concern for the summer transfer window with their two main attackers, Romelu Lukaku and Lacina Traore, both returning to their clubs after their loan spell. This means that the bulk of the transfer budget will have to used to strengthen this position so that they once again have high quality strikers.
With the inflation of transfer fees due to the World Cup Roberto Martinez will have a difficult job to recruit strikers to the same level as they experienced with Lukaku. Overall it is great progress for Everton but it order to recreate the same success and keep up with other teams who are improving their squads they need to strengthen wisely.
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