Premier League • England

Everton in competition with Leicester for Barcelona starlet as contract winds down

Arnau Comas Barcelona

Everton look set to compete with Leicester City for the signing of a Barcelona centre-back whose contract is expiring, as per reports.

Everton boss Rafa Benitez has Michael Keane, Ben Godfrey, Yerry Mina and Mason Holgate available in the centre of defence. His favourite pairing seems to be Keane and Godfrey, amid Mina’s ongoing thigh problem.

The duo helped goalkeeper Jordan Pickford to keep a clean sheet last time out as Everton drew 0-0 with Antonio Conte’s Tottenham.

Despite his strong options, Benitez is always searching for cheap, new additions to his squad.

Leicester, meanwhile, tend to operate with a back-three of Daniel Amartey, Jonny Evans and Caglar Soyuncu. The Foxes also brought in Jannik Vestergaard this summer, while young talent Wesley Fofana is recovering from a serious injury.

Vestergaard is yet to make any real impact and Fofana is attracting interest from Chelsea, so it’s clear to see why Leicester would want a new centre-half.

Sport Witness, citing reports in the Spanish media, claim that Everton and Leicester are both in for a Barcelona starlet.

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That man is 21-year-old Arnau Comas, who captains the Blaugrana’s B team. He has made 11 appearances so far this campaign, helping the side to pick up six wins and five clean sheets.

Comas is highly rated by the Barcelona coaching staff. They believe he has the potential to compete for a starting spot in the senior squad over the next couple of seasons.

That is the player’s aim too, although his contract debacle may halt those efforts. His current deal expires in June and talks over an extension are yet to reach a breakthrough.

Everton and Leicester are both keeping tabs on the situation. They could bring the defender to the Premier League by putting attractive wages on the table next summer.

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Rodgers in latest response to Man Utd links

Meanwhile, Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers has given his latest response to rumours linking him with the Man Utd job.

“There’s two things. Firstly it is really disrespectful to ask the question when you have a manager in place, a good manager and a good man, who is working hard at the club,” he said.

“Secondly I can’t really comment on it, because it is not something that is real.

“I am here as the Leicester City manager, proud to be here, privileged to be here and fully committed to the players, the club, the ownership. That’s about it, all the other noise around that is something we can’t control.”

Leicester host Chelsea at the King Power on Saturday lunchtime. Everton, meanwhile, travel to Man City on Sunday at 14:00.

PREDICTIONS: Liverpool too good for Arsenal; Solskjaer respite at Watford; Tottenham v Leeds humdinger