Harry Redknapp, who has just taken over at Birmingham City, is interested in bring in Everton’s Aaron Lennon on loan. Redknapp’s new club finished 19th out of 24 teams in the Championship last season.
Lennon and Redknapp were together at Tottenham from 2008-2012 — some of Lennon’s best years at White Hart Lane.
Lennon, 30, is coming off a trying 2016-17 season, in which he was often injured and ended up briefly hospitalized with mental health issues toward the end of the season. He played only 510 Premier League minutes, notching one assist and no goals.
The plausibility of this move could be under question from a couple of angles.
First, would Lennon be willing to accept a move down to the Championship? He’s not going to be an every-day player for a club of Everton’s stature, one would think, but he spent the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons playing decent minutes and making a reasonable impact at the club.
Second, will Ronald Koeman allow Lennon to leave? Because of Lennon’s physical and mental health issues last season, we never got a full sense of exactly how Koeman rates the player — making it unclear as to whether or not the Dutchman values the player highly enough to block a move.
It’s also worth noting that the Toffees are incredibly short on wide attackers — you could argue that Lennon is the only true wide player on Everton’s current roster, depending on what you think Kevin Mirallas and Ademola Lookman’s best positions are. Even if Koeman doesn’t see Lennon as a starter, his ability as a wide man may make him more valuable than his raw talent dictates.
Finally, will Lennon be looking for a move at this stage of his career? After the mental health struggles of last season, it’s possible that a move to a club in a lower-pressure league with a manager he’s very familiar with could be attractive to the English winger.
However, such a move would come with substantial change, and force Lennon to adjust to a new city and new teammates — which might not be enticing to him at this stage.
At the end of the day, only Aaron knows what’s best for him — and I’d wager Koeman and Co. wouldn’t stand in the way of a move that puts Lennon in a better place for his continued recovery.
But, whether Lennon would actually be interested in a loan move to Redknapp’s Birmingham City is still unclear.