There was a time not too long ago in which Thomas Lemar, playing for Monaco, was considered a possible big money candidate for purchase by Arsenal. The young Frenchman would eventually find his way to Atletico Madrid to join fellow countryman Antoine Griezmann, a tactic of appeasement from a club scared to lose their premier talent to Barcelona.
Fast forward to 2020, and not only has Griezmann long ago departed Atletico Madrid for Barcelona, but Lemar is an all but forgotten man in Madrid. At only 24-years-old, it is not remarkable to believe that there is still a great amount of potential left in the player, if only a manager were able to coax it out of him; enter Carlo Ancelotti.
If the price is right, it might be a worthwhile gamble for Everton to endeavor upon. For the young man about to hit his peak age, it might be a gamble to take as well; all parties, from the player, to both clubs, could benefit greatly if a transfer could be worked out.
Thomas Lemar: Such talent and yet, such little recent production requires an innovation
The Frenchman was once a young French dangerman on the outside, in a vein similar to that of Ousmane Dembele and Kylian Mbappe (a teammate and friend of his at Monaco). While those are very talented players to be compared to, it is not hyperbole by any stretch of the imagination.
But since moving to Spain, Lemar has simply seemed out of place on the football pitch. This can happen when a player isn’t necessarily comfortable either in his new country, or with his new team and or teammates. Whatever the particular issue, he has not shown the same ability, vision, creativity or invention as previously. With this loss of production, has come the loss of playtime, his spirit and outward competitiveness as well.
Sometimes, to regain ones self esteem, one must feel wanted once more; this is as true personally as professionally. For Lemar to regain his self esteem and ambition within the game of Football, he may need to feel needed; if Everton can manage a move for the player, Ancelotti might be able to work some tactical and psychological magic on the mercurial winger.
For Everton, Lemar could slot in perfectly on the left side of a 4-4-2, allowing newly signed James Rodriguez to sit on the right wing, with Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin up top. Behind them, some rotation of the newly signed Allan and Abdoulaye Doucouré as well as Andre Gomes and Tom Davies, if he remains a Toffee. Fabian Delph will also factor in should he be able to remain healthy this campaign, while the wait for Jean Philippe-Gbamin’s return from injury stretches ever farther into the future.
This is a more formidable team of midfielders and forwards than Everton will have fielded in quite sometime. Lemar could be spelled by Alex Iwobi, Bernard and Anthony Gordon, providing great competition for the left side, while James offers the same on the right. For Everton, putting as many tools around the young talent they have remains key and Ancelotti knows this; if some of the tools happen to be younger pieces as well, then all the better.
Under Ancelotti, Lemar could learn from a real sage while playing a more exciting, attacking brand of football with a great mixture of youth and veterans. He could provide width, innovation, goals and assists, could refocus on football while forgetting the dismal spell of a learning experience that has been his time on the Iberian Peninsula. It could very well be the perfect setup for the player and the Toffees; it would also be perfect for Atletico Madrid as well.
Goodbye Madrid, Hello Merseyside: Thomas Lemar can be the revelation for Everton that Atletico thought he’d be, and potentially cheap
While Ancelotti and Big Duncan Ferguson of Everton build a competitive, spirited bunch, Diego Simeone of Atletico Madrid has a similar task. Even though his team is a consistent European contender, he must build quickly around his young, remarkable attacking talent.
Replacing Griezmann wasn’t going to be easy at Atletico, and yet Joao Felix is on his way should he be able to avoid injuries during this new campaign. Another year older and stronger, Simeone must build around him; Lemar is deadweight as it relates to this goal. He was a plan around the last superstar, and with a new superstar, comes a new plan. Raising capital is essential for this endeavor and so, cutting players who aren’t contributing is inevitable.
And yet, Lemar is not worth nearly as much as what he once was. So Madrid will have to bite the bullet, to use the popular term; they wouldn’t even be the only club from Madrid to considerate the measure during this challenging economic time. And this could provide Ancelotti and Everton the perfect opportunity to get another player at remarkable discount; fellow wing option Hirving Lozano certainly won’t come that cheap from Napoli, and so Lemar must be weighed as an option thoughtfully.
In a new country, with new teammates, a genius manager and a young ambitious club, it would surprise me to not receive complete and total effort from Lemar, should he be saved from Spain and La Liga. A lifeline at this stage of the players career could alter the trajectory back towards the heights of a few years past. In this way, while Everton would look to save Lemar, he in turn could absolutely save them in return; its hard to argue with a deal like that for the Toffees.