Everton are believed to be interested in a deal for Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher, following the youngster’s impressive spell on loan at Crystal Palace last season.
What’s the word?
According to the i, Toffees boss Frank Lampard is ‘keen’ on prising the 22-year-old from Stamford Bridge this summer, albeit with the Merseysiders likely to have to wait until nearer the end of the window to strike a deal.
Should Everton sign Conor Gallagher?
The report suggests that the future of the England international will not be resolved until nearer the start of the new season, with Blues boss Thomas Tuchel keen to take a closer look at the highly-rated starlet during pre-season.
Lampard’s former international colleague Steven Gerrard is also believed to be keen on bringing the all-action gem to Aston Villa, while a return to Selhurst Park has been mooted, although any suitor could have to fork out as much as £50m for his signature.
Lampard needs him badly
If it is true that the Goodison outfit may only pay out a ‘big fee’ for one major new addition this summer, as has been reported, then it would be no major error were that marquee addition to be that of Gallagher, with the one-time West Bromwich Albion loanee likely to had a much-needed spark to the club’s engine room.
The 2021/22 campaign proved a particularly standout season for the £22.5m-rated gem, as he chipped in with eight goals and three assists in 34 league appearances for Patrick Vieira’s side, having joined the Eagles on a temporary deal last summer.
The £17k-per-week workhorse has emerged as a real exciting, box-to-box, old-fashioned midfield presence, ranking highly in a number of attacking and defensive metrics, including in the top 7% for pressures made, as well as the top 8% for dribbles completed among those in his position across Europe’s top five leagues.
That “outrageous” form, as described by one source, has unsurprisingly alerted the attention of clubs across the division, with the Epsom-born gem possessing that rare gift of being able to impact the game both defensively and offensively.
Also labelled a “monster” by Tom Dutton, the 6-foot menace has even drawn comparisons to current teammate N’Golo Kante for his relentless midfield approach, with all the signs pointing to a player destined to thrive at the elite level.
Despite the pull of his parent club, there may be nowhere better for a young English midfielder to blossom than under the tutelage of one of the greats of the game in that position in Lampard, with the 44-year-old an ideal figure to nurture the exciting talent.
As for the former Derby coach, he would no doubt love to have such an energetic figure in his side moving forward, with Gallagher’s electric quality in stark contrast to that of current regular Allan, whom Harry Redknapp once suggested simply “can’t run”.
If Lampard is to spark an improvement on last term, then having the young talent in tow could make life a whole lot easier.
AND, in other news: Everton want to sign “dangerous” £57.8m ace this summer, supporters will be buzzing.