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Everton submit third bid for young forward

The Blues are continuing their pursuit of Leeds player Wilfried Gnonto

Leeds United v Cardiff City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

It is not an understatement to say that Everton Director of Football Kevin Thelwell really, really wants Wilfried Gnonto. The Blues have been linked with the Italy international forward pretty much from the day the 2022-23 season ended with Leeds United going down and the Toffees staying up at their expense.

Throughout the summer we’ve heard rumours of the player turning down Everton, agreeing personal terms with Everton, and desperately wanting to move to Everton. A long-drawn battle with Leeds has continued with the Yorkshire club who insist the player is not for sale.

Last week Leeds issued a press statement indicating that they would not be selling the player under any circumstances despite the player refusing to play. Gnonto made himself unavailable for their Wednesday night Carabao Cup win, but then trained for the next couple of days before again saying he would not be available for the weekend’s Championship fixture.

Earlier today manager Daniel Farke indicated that Gnonto, Luis Sinisterra and Helder Costa are all training separately from the main Leeds squad, and while the latter pair do have relegation release clauses in their contracts, the Italian international did not.

Now today we hear that the Blues have made their third offer for the 19-year-old who still has four years left on his contract, for about £25 million including likely performance-related add-ons.

With Everton’s financial situation being what it is, the deal will likely be spread out over several years, and the Toffees still needing to sign at least another striker and possibly a centrehalf during the summer transfer window which will shut in a fortnight.