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Everton should run away from this Barcelona transfer target

Late window improvements to the defence in the works.

International Champions Cup 2015 - Manchester United v FC Barcelona

Everton has had plentiful links to a variety of players all over the continent this summer. Some of these became realities and are already looking like smart decisions. Sandro Ramirez comes to mind. Some maybe weren’t the world’s best idea, but they didn’t cost anything, so who cares (lookin at you, Cuco). Some rumours fizzled and died, and frankly that’s what we are hoping happens here.

The Mirror suggests that Everton are set to battle West Brom for Thomas Vermaelen. Okay, if you didn’t stop reading when you saw “battle West Brom” and you didn’t stop reading when you saw Thomas Vermaelen, let’s go through the specific details of why this is a bad idea just in case someone at your water cooler today is all about this potential deal.

That is an actual screenshot from his injury status listing at Transfermarkt.com. Barcelona were playing something called Gimnàstic de Tarragona and he went down with a mystery malady.

The 31 year old has less than 2000 league minutes in the last four years. He made nine league appearances last year on loan at Roma, and he made ten the year before at Barcelona. Vermaelen missed 89 days due to injury last year, and missed 245 days from October 9th, 2014 to June 10th 2016. He’s old, injury prone, and not very good.

Vermalen’s speed has always been an issue - he frankly had circles run around him in La Liga, and he’s not actually all that big. Six foot tall (1.83m) for a center back isn’t big enough to not be able to move your feet.

Vermaelen has a decent defensive skill set - 61% of your tackles is laudable, but when you are getting blown by every time your heels leave the 18 yard line it’s not that much of a bargaining chip.

I understand that Ashley Williams doesn’t set the world on fire. He was never an elite CB and he’s not what he used to be. However, Ash is still a serviceable starter in the Premier League, especially when compared to a guy who honestly isn’t that far ahead of an MLS player (Laurent Ciman) on Belgium’s defensive depth chart.

Let WBA have him, and if by some work of heaven he is healthy when we roll into town, we’ll just send Davy and Sandro past him at a light jog.