Why Everton should go all out to sign Baptiste Santamaria
According to L’Equipe (h/t The Birmingham Mail), Everton are one of the Premier League clubs interested in signing Angers midfielder, Baptiste Santamaria.
Baptiste Santamaria, 24, has enjoyed a good start to the Ligue 1 season, managing a goal and assist in 19 games. Angers are now seeking to extend the Frenchman’s contract by giving a wage hike, with his current deal running out in 2022. (h/t The Birmingham Mail)
The midfielder’s performances have also caught the attention of Aston Villa, Newcastle and West Ham, the report adds. (h/t The Birmingham Mail)
Everton, meanwhile, have appointed Carlo Ancelotti as their new permanent manager and the Italian boss was in the stands for the Toffees’ game against Arsenal, which finished as a 0-0 draw. Ancelotti’s appointment shows great ambition from Everton, who have endured a difficult time this season.
The Merseysiders now have a manager who ranks among the most successful in world football, and his experience could be vital as Everton look to climb the table. One of the first and foremost tasks for Ancelotti is to strengthen the defence, which has conceded 29 goals in 18 games.
In addition to defensive reinforcements, the Italian should also address the midfield. Summer signings Andre Gomes, Fabian Delph and Jean-Philippe Gbamin have suffered injury problems, so Everton going for Baptiste Santamaria does make some sense.
A defensive midfielder by trade, Santamaria excels in ball interception and tackling abilities. In 19 Ligue 1 games, he has averaged 2.9 tackles, 1.7 interceptions and 0.3 blocks per game. He has a decent pass success rate of 80.7%. The Frenchman has registered 1.2 shots per game, 0.5 key passes and 4.6 long balls. [Courtesy: WhoScored]
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If Ancelotti can wrap up a deal for Santamaria, the midfielder’s arrival could change the course of events and potentially save them from relegation.
Also, with Everton’s midfield looking out of sorts, bringing in an established and consistent player like Santamaria would be of great help. The Angers star is a holding midfielder but can play in a box-to-box role too, which should make him a smart addition to the Toffees’ midfield.
All in all, Everton must go all out to win the race for Santamaria’s signature. Given that the interest in the midfielder is high, they should look to wrap up the deal as quickly as possible in January.