Last summer, thirteen of the 20 clubs in the league broke their transfer records but the mold was broken by Everton. Their record agreement dates back to 2014 when Chelsea was paid £ 28m for Romelu Lukaku by them. Lukaku has almost trebled in value in three decades, getting Everton’s most rewarding sale by a country mile, and the club is prepared to spend a massive chunk of the £ 75m they obtained from Manchester United to break their transfer record once more. They’ve bid £ 45m and £ 40m for Gylfi Sigurdsson but Swansea City are holding out for another £ 5m.
All of us know how this ends, with Swansea getting the fee they need and Everton getting their guy. Everton secured the help of the Swansea captain last season when they signed Ashley Williams and they’re only a few million short this summer of repeating the trick. Sigurdsson was instrumental for Swansea as they escaped relegation in the last few months of this season, so it is little surprise that the club has asked for an amount, but is he really worth all that money?
There is little doubt that Sigurdsson is an excellent player at Premier League level, but he turns 28 in September and isn’t likely to improve. You know what you are going to get but you understand what you are not getting: an elite player. Perhaps some signings from the £ 50m bracket — such as Benjamin Mendy and Kyle Walker — are not players but at least they’re among the best available in their own positions. That is not true with Sigurdsson. His statistics from last season reveal he’s a taker but his output is skewed by that truth. sbobet casino
However, just five of Sigurdsson’s assists came from open play, which places him outside the top 20 from the Premier League and equivalent 85th in Europe, beneath the man he’s tipped to replace at Goodison Park, Ross Barkley (that supplied six assists from open play), and level with the coming Wayne Rooney, who had less than half as much game time as Sigurdsson.
The vast majority of Sigurdsson’s assists came from set pieces — eight of the 13 — that was enough to place him together with Toni Kroos as the very best in Europe’s top five leagues, but Everton have just traded their large target man and none of Lukaku’s replacements in assault — Sandro Ramírez, Davy Klaassen, and Rooney — are equally as powerful in the atmosphere, indicating Sigurdsson’s greatest asset won’t be put to use too frequently. His tally of six assists for Fernando Llorente season was the combination in the Premier League, but Everton doesn’t have a player on the books.
Sigurdsson wasn’t quite as successful from open play last season. His figure of 25 moves from the play was modest, to say the least. It’s the exact same amount that Gareth Barry and Idrissa Gueye made for Everton from keeping midfield and shorter than half of Barkley’s total (56). The Iceland international may have valuable Premier League encounter but you will find considerably cheaper alternatives out there. Ronald Koeman should think about the Ryad Boudebouz, that are both available at a fraction of the purchase price of Montpellier and Chievo’s Valter Birsa. In regards to creating opportunities, Algeria global Boudebouz is streets ahead. The midfielder — that is regarded as available for approximately £ 15m — created the most chances per match in Europe’s top five leagues last season (3.5), with 68 of them coming from open play.
At 27, he’s the exact same age as Sigurdsson but he offers much more by means of dribbling ability — 2.7 dribbles per game compared to 0.8 — while fitting Sigurdsson for lunges per game (both 1.2) — and he also produced those characters while playing under similar conditions in a relegation battle. He did not score as many goals or lay on as many aids — seven goals and seven assists for Viera opposed to nine goals and 13 assists for Sigurdsson — but he’s a lot more inventive in overall play, with 67 important moves when excluding set bits. With a larger number of dribbles (two per game) and tackles (1.4 per game), the Spanish playmaker would also be much cheaper option — and he’s capable of playing deeper in midfield or wide on the left if needed. He might not have been given time to impress but his failure force himself and to make the grade should be a concern. Sigurdsson did not look close to a £ 50m player and he does not know. It might not be the fee in the window, from checking players who may offer them more for less money, but that should not stop Everton.