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Everton and Watford agree Abdoulaye Doucouré fee

The Blues are believed to be paying the Hornets up to £25 million for the Frenchman

Everton FC v Watford FC - Premier League
Doucouré scored against Everton for Watford in December 2018
Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Everton have reached an agreement with Watford FC over the signing of midfielder Abdoulaye Doucouré, with the Blues expected to pay in the region of £25 million.

Doucouré, who was reportedly a target for Everton last season under former Watford boss Marco Silva, has been given permission to discuss personal terms and undergo a medical ahead of a move to Goodison Park.

According to The Times’ northern football correspondent, Paul Joyce, Everton will pay an initial fee of about £20 million for the 27-year-old. Though, the Telegraph’s Jason Burt has added this may rise to £25 million with certain add-ons included.

Doucouré’s imminent arrival, which will likely see him since a four-year deal, comes as Everton appear extremely close to signing fellow midfielders Allan and James Rodriguez from Napoli and Real Madrid respectively.

Since joining Watford from Rennes in February 2016, the Frenchman has made 141 appearances for the Hornets, scoring 17 goals.

A box-to-box midfielder, Doucouré’s form improved for Watford last term following the arrival of manager Nigel Pearson in December, when he was pushed further forward. Indeed, he scored three goals in six Premier League games between January and February, having only netted once all season prior.

But Doucouré was unable to prevent Watford from slipping back into the Championship after five seasons in the Premier League, and has looked likely to leave ever since their relegation was confirmed.

Should Doucouré, Allan and Rodriguez all make their expected moves to Everton, it will leave Carlo Ancelotti with potentially ten midfielders to choose from, with Gylfi Sigurdsson, André Gomes, Jean-Philippe Gbamin, Fabian Delph, Tom Davies, Muhamed Besic and Beni Baningime already on the club’s books.