Everton confident of cut-price Koulibaly deal

Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly in action against AC Milan

Everton believe they will be able to sign Kalidou Koulibaly in a cut-price deal this summer, as reported by Football Insider.

What is the latest transfer news involving Koulibaly?

The Toffees have been linked with a move for Koulibaly in recent weeks, and appear to be growing in confidence that they will land their man.

The club are happy to sell Yerry Mina at the end of the season to help finance the deal for Koulibaly.

How much is Koulibaly worth and when does his contract expire?

The in-demand defender attracted interest from Manchester United, Liverpool and PSG last summer. However, the European giants baulked at Napoli’s £89m asking price.

Everton expect that price-tag to drop significantly by the next transfer window, and are optimistic that they will able to prise Koulibaly away from Naples for less than £60m.

Koulibaly currently has two years remaining on his contract at the Serie A club.

What are Koulibaly’s stats this season?

The Senegalese international has featured in 20 league matches for Napoli in 2020/21. In those fixtures, the side have managed to keep 10 clean sheets.

By contrast, Everton have only kept seven clean sheets in their 28 top-flight games. Newcastle, West Brom and Sheffield United are the only sides who have managed fewer clean sheets.

Koulibaly is also tidy in possession. As per WhoScored, he has made 1233 accurate passes in Italy’s top division this year – Michael Keane (1357) is the only Everton player to make more.

What has Noel Whelan said about Koulibaly?

Former Leeds striker Noel Whelan admires Koulibaly, and urged Liverpool to sign the 29-year-old last October as a replacement for the injured Virgil van Dijk.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “Koulibaly is fantastic and he is still at Napoli. Maybe he is somebody that they need to look at.

“He would bring them that leadership. He is a real presence at the back and would be worth the money.

“Give him an opportunity in the Premier League. Go after him in the January window.”

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Who is this former Everton player?

Would signing Koulibaly be another Ancelotti masterstroke?

Liverpool’s loss could be Everton’s gain.

Last summer, Everton pulled off the signing of James Rodriguez from Real Madrid. Having worked with Rodriguez before, Ancelotti was able to help the Colombian playmaker hit the ground running and appeared to be an important factor in sealing his services. 

According to WhoScored, Rodriguez has registered nine goal contributions in the league this year, and has received the highest average match rating (7.24) amongst his teammates across the course of the campaign.

By bringing in Koulibaly, Ancelotti would have another chance to coach a former top-level player of his. The pair worked together at Napoli for over a year and the sheer level of previous interest in Koulibaly pays testament to how talented he is. 

Ancelotti has shown that he can consistently get the best out of Rodriguez. Perhaps he can do the same with Koulibaly in 2021/22 to help Everton crack the top four for the first time since 2005.

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