It looks as though the path may be clear for Everton to pursue Patrick van Aanholt in January, with Roy Hodgson and Crystal Palace believed to be keen on a move for Southampton full-back Matt Targett.
A product of the Chelsea academy system, Van Aanholt was brought to Selhurst Park by current Everton boss Sam Allardyce last January having previously worked under him at Sunderland. Clearly, the pair enjoy a great working relationship, and thanks to the Toffees minor issues on the left-hand side of defence, where Cuco Martina is being played regularly at the time of writing, Patrick may well have a starting spot ready and waiting for him on Merseyside.
The Dutchman has endured more than two months out of the first-team picture at Selhurst Park, where Hodgson appears to favour Jeffrey Schlupp but in Matt Targett, it seems the former England gaffer would be getting someone he knows rather well.
Still only 22, the 6’0 left-back has been on the Saints’ books since 2003, making his first-team debut for the club back in 2014 alongside an England career which has seen him represent the Three Lions at U19, U20 and U21 level. Despite being named the club’s Young Player of the Year in the 2014-15 season, he appears to have fallen squarely behind Ryan Bertrand in the Southampton pecking order and has made just 8 appearances in all competitions so far this term.
Obviously known to Hodgson as a consequence of his exploits in the England youth set-up, it feels as though he could thrive from a fresh challenge in SE25 if given the chance, with his potential transfer fee likely to be less than what we could expect to recoup from Patrick van Aanholt’s sale, should he indeed make the switch to Everton in the coming weeks.
Having given the proposed transfers some thought, I’m firmly in the “yes” camp. Given his age and obvious potential for improvement, it seems like a no-brainer if all parties are open to a deal.
Watch this space.