After Everton’s F.A. Cup 3rd Round defeat at the hands of Leicester, Ronald Koeman demanded in his post match comments that the club make some signings in January. After the game he said
“I know what is needed to change,” “If everybody opened his eyes maybe we will get further in our improvement – because that is what this team needs.”
and it seems as if Koeman has got his wish with the news that Morgan Schneiderlin is set to sign for £22m.
The French international’s name has repeatedly cropped up as a potential transfer for Everton in January and the Merseysiders have finally got their man after the fee was agreed between themselves and his current club Manchester United.
Everton suffered disappointment when trying to land Schnieiderlin’s soon to be former teammate Memphis Depay. Although Depay is struggling to get first team football at Old Trafford, Jose Mourinho was not prepared to let the former PSV midfielder go out on loan this month.
But that setback has not deterred The Toffees in their hunt for new midfield personnel and with a return to Old Trafford they are now set to add Schneiderlin to their ranks. With the 27 year old making the short move from Manchester to Merseyside it means The Red Devils will not quite get recoup the £25m they paid Southampton back in 2015.
A signing which was made by previous manager Louis Van Gaal and the former Barcelona and Ajax manager seemed ready to put a lot of trust in his new signing. As he gave him 29 Premier League appearances during a campaign which saw United eventually finish 5th in the table, just missing out on a Champions League place to arch rivals Manchester City by virtue of goal difference.
Unfortunately since Van Gaal’s sacking Schneiderlin has struggled to break into the first team with new boss Jose Mourinho deciding not to place the same amount of faith in the player who started his career at Strasbourg in 2005. He has made just 8 appearances across all competitions this season with just 3 of those in the Premier League.
The move to Everton will mean that player and manager once will again link up after their time together at Southampton. These two may have only worked together for a season but it was Schneiderlin’s performances that not only led The Saints to a Europa League place but also attracted the likes of Manchester United and Tottenham in a bid for his signature.
A season that warranted 4 goals from 25 Premier League starts as Southampton earned an impressive 7th place finish and although he has not necessarily been purchased for his goal scoring exploits he will certainly help Everton’s cause as they look to earn a realistic best of 7th place this season themselves.
With Ademola Lookman also joining in the club in the transfer window it seems as if the transfer funds that have been promised by majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri are finally starting to be spent. Although from both Koeman’s and an Everton fans point of view it will be a shame that it has taken a Cup exit in which to do so.
But the signings of Schneiderlin is certainly one that should be heralded as exciting and the hope will be that he shows the form that earned him that move to Old Trafford in the first place. With regular first team football you would imagine that will be a realistic prospect and Everton will soon reap the rewards.
And with two new signings under Everton’s belt the question you have to ask now, is whether this is the last bit of transfer business we see at Goodison Park this month or if they are still in the market for some more new faces?