Indeed, it has been a mark of Farhad Moshiri’s tenure since he took over a couple of years ago to hand the U-23 and U-18 sides an unprecedented transfer budget, which has seen the Blues youth teams step up a level in recent seasons.
Everton are one of the four teams reportedly watching Oldham Athletic defender Tom Hamer, along with Leeds United, Burnley and Brighton & Hove Albion. The 18-year-old broke through from the youth side last season, making seven League One appearances starting off at rightback and then reverting to his preferred position as centrehalf and picked up one goal and one assist.
The teenager has caught the eye with his assured performances and has been widely scouted and compared to former Oldham and current Burnley defender James Tarkowski. Hamer signed his first professional contract earlier this year, and the two-year term on it leaves the club with some leverage if they try to sell him on this summer as they attempt to climb back up to League One after getting relegated.
He got his first senior side goal in the last game of the season, a 2-2 draw against Northampton Town (wearing #34 in the orange kit).
Another player the Blues are being linked with is teenage prodigy Omari Forson, whose ball-handling tricks videos took the internet by storm since he was barely five years old. The youngster is now 14 and on the books at Tottenham Hotspur, but is being closely watched by both Manchester City and Everton among others.
The young forward is still a couple of years from breaking through to U18 prominence, but definitely one to keep an eye on.