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Italian interest in Everton striker ramping up

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It appears the Blues are courting teams looking at Moise Kean

Liverpool FC v Everton FC - Premier League Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Moise Kean has not had the best of times at Everton since he joined the Blues from Juventus in the summer of 2019. Under Marco Silva, the Toffees stumbled to a rough start which eventually led to the manager’s sacking last week.

Silva was under immense pressure to produce results and didn’t appear too willing to take any risks with playing unproven youngsters, though it could be argued that was to his own detriment as Kean has impressed in the short spells he has played.

The 19 year old has had 4 starts and 13 appearances for the Toffees this season in the Premier League and the Carabao Cup, for a total of only 450 minutes of playing time with just one assist to show for his efforts.

While many fickle fans will be willing to write him off on the basis of that, the underlying numbers show that the goals will come and he has been more unfortunate than anything else. In the league he is averaging 3.3 shots per 90min played tied with Theo Walcott, only behind Cenk Tosun’s 3.7, with the Blues leading scorer Richarlison at 2.8 per 90.

However, it’s shots from distance where he has excelled, using his pace to create shooting opportunities for himself especially when he’s been isolated up top. Kean has 1.4 shots per 90 from outside the box, leading Gylfi Sigurdsson who has 1.0 and Walcott with 0.9 per 90.

The teenager has been underperforming both his expected goals and assists, and averages 0.36xG and 0.34xA per 90 min, which gives him a very respectable expected goal contribution of 0.70 goals per 90 minutes played, leading the entire team - if there was ever an argument for him to get playing time, that would be it. Primary striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin lags behind him with 0.60 (0.58xG + 0.02xA), Tosun only has 0.44 (0.38xG + 0.06xA) and Richarlison is at 0.45 (0.31xG + 0.14xA).

Kean had been linked last month with a move back to Italy in the upcoming January transfer window, primarily by gold-digging father who was looking to get a cut of is transfer fee, and also by sleazy super-agent Mino Raiola who has developed a reputation for creating unrest with his clients where there has been peace.

The rumours then were that AC Milan and AS Roma were looking at the youngster. Italian sports journalist Nicolò Schira, who reported extensively on Kean when Everton signed him during the summer, has reported today that it’s Bologna who are looking to make a move for the player, and that talks are ongoing between Everton and the Serie A mid-table side.

Everton FC v Watford FC - Carabao Cup Round of 16 Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Kean is very good friends with fellow Italian youngster Nicolò Zaniolo who is playing his trade at Roma, with the pair having gotten in trouble together in the past playing truant in the Italy Under-23 camp, but with Edin Dzeko on their books as well, it doesn’t look likely they will be in for Kean, a self-proclaimed Juventus fan. Meanwhile Milan appear close to re-signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic to solve their striking woes so that could end their Kean interest.

It will certainly be a surprise if Everton are interested in loaning the player out so quickly, let alone selling him outright, when he’s shown so much potential both before he joined the Toffees and since then too. Widely thought to be a Marcel Brands signing, it’s unlikely the Director of Football would be willing to let him go this soon, but it really could all depend on who the next Everton manager is, and if the Blues are looking for an experienced Premier League striker in January while offloading Cenk Tosun first.