With Arkaduisz Milik off to Marseilles officially, the backup options for Dominic Calvert-Lewin remains slight at best. Norwegian striker Joshua King, long rumored to be leaving AFC Bournemouth, could be a solution for Everton, should his wage demands be reasonable. As they are reportedly a bit much currently, it is uncertain if Everton, navigating FFP rules and regulations while trying to make the push towards European competition, would be able, or wise, to spring for him anyway.
Selling Bernard Duarte and/or Cenk Tosun is good headway towards freeing up funds to make a beneficial transfer purchase certainly, it is true. Yet as of right now, rumors like Sami Khedira or Isco appear no more alive than the King rumor, and so it is difficult to know whether any of their acquisitions are really plausible to expect before the winter window closes.
But if Marcel Brands can make the deal without too much financial fallout, bringing the 29-year-old to Merseyside could be really smart business, should the Don be able to find the striker’s form at Goodison Park. The player is better than his surroundings and he has outgrown his time as a Cherry, despite the lack of production this year. What it could mean for the Toffees however, is multifaceted in terms of the potential on the pitch impact, and what it could mean for the future of the club is equally as unique and vibrant.
Joshua King: A Real Force leading an attacking Line could provide Everton the depth it needs
With the Toffees this year, we have seen great impact from players all over the pitch. From DCL, to Richarlison, Abdoulaye Doucoure. Allan, James Rodriguez, Alex Iwobi, Andre Gomes Ben Godfrey, the list goes on and on. Yet while the club has found depth and versatility behind many of their most necessary spots, see Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey acting as fullbacks, it cannot rely on Cenk Tosun for the lift some matches will require late; it is equally unsustainable to imagine that both Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin will stay completely healthy, ban free or in the same form we’ve seen for the majority of this season.
Joshua King, as Milik or more expensive options could provide, offers real creativity, scoring and number nine instincts, sharing a lot of similar characteristics with the man he could be backing up. Unlike Milik, and more similar to a Hirving Lozano, or Leon Bailey, King has real versatility that could benefit Everton tactically and practically should the Blues get rid of both Bernard and Tosun this month.
He should be, thanks in part to his lack of production, as well as the economic climate generated by COVID-19, less expensive than his official Transfermarkt evaluation of £9.90m indicates. And while his wage demands appear to currently be a point of disagreement with interested clubs such as the Toffees, the players ability to offer depth for not only Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison, but in the middle of the pitch as well and even behind a central striker as a secondary option.
While his eleven matches in the Championship have seen no statistical impact in term of goals or assists, his FA Cup campaign has been more noticeable and in less matches. In just one match in that competition, the player had two goals, and an assist, demonstrating that when in the proper place with the proper talent around him, he can still be very dangerous. And there is more evidence of this in previous years of course; in his prior four Premiership campaigns, the player had a combined 42 goals and 12 assists. Those numbers, when added to those that Everton are already creating, tell the story of the clubs interest in the player currently.
This must surely be appealing for Everton, who could use added offensive inspiration across the pitch. With such an impressive scoring record thus far, the reader may find themselves asking how a proclamation such as the prior sentence could be made with all things considered; it is not enough however. The Premiership is absolutely stacked with impressive clubs and squads and just because there seems to be more parity this year than in the last few, doesn’t mean that a squad cannot get hot and put other clubs in the rear view mirror quickly. With Chelsea full of talent, and a new boss in Thomas Tuchel as well, and both Manchester clubs seemingly finding their form, the bar is set, and efficient bench play is crucial. Joshua King, although he is nearing thirty, can help the Royal Blue demonstrate better depth, versatility, ruthlessness in front of goal and further offensive fluidity. This is what we need for a harsh upcoming two months.
The Months Matter: The Rest of January, followed by February, will further hint at Everton’s full potential this season
With the schedule that the rest of January, followed by February presents the club with currently, any backup or reinforcements would be appreciated for sure, although the current team has again found its form over the last month and a half. With or without help, the team will be ready, yet a team with a Joshua King, along with a healthy Allan and Jean-Philippe Gbamin and perhaps a Sami Khedira in place of Fabian Delph, could really give clubs fits with counter attacking football, as well as possessive football.
With the disappointing draw versus a very good Leicester City squad at Goodison Park on Wednesday, a victory against Newcastle becomes even more important than it would’ve been prior. That endeavor, on Saturday, will require the Toffees to demonstrate proper resolve to finish this month in good spirits. After just a point from this match, getting three in a revenge game versus the Magpies will be absolutely crucial; should this be done, the club will enter February, transfer help or not, feeling as though they still have a real shot at both the FA Cup and the Premiership outright.
And February see Everton facing a disjointed Leeds United, before attempting to salvage points against a Manchester United squad that have absolutely had their number across all competitions this campaign thus far. The fifth round of the FA Cup against Tottenham Hotspur follows just a couple of days after the United match at Old Trafford where Sheffield Unoted just eked out a victory, Everton will host Fulham before a Merseyside Derby at Anfield to conclude the second month of the new year.
While moving through the FA Cup remains very important, good form in the Premiership must also be considered crucial for the ambitions of Don Carlo and the Royal Blue. Eight points in February would be good form, and should six more points be earned before February, the Toffees will almost certainly be in the running for a top four position by the time March challenges the resilience of all English Footballing clubs.
And Joshua King would help the club towards this end, should he be able to find his form on Merseyside in the company of a mix of great talent and ability, new and old. Under the watchful eye of Carlo Ancelotti and Big Dunc, the progress the team could make with more true danger men might really demonstrate the tactical and practical genius of our current manager. And while it is a matter of money and what can be done within the rules that we must conform to, finding the means to accomplish further improvement for Everton must be a focal point until the winter window closes, and in the lead up to the successive summer window. Don Carlo has shown that he will not disappoint given the time and the resources and with a difficult month ahead of us, we must trust as best we can that Europe is firmly within our sights and grasp.