Former Arsenal star rejects Everton move to leave Frank Lampard scrambling for other options

Ben Stewart
Arsenal Training - Arsenal Training Centre, London, Britain - September 27, 2017 Arsenal's David Ospina, Alexis Sanchez, Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal and Aaron Ramsey arrive for training

Reports have claimed that former Arsenal full-back Hector Bellerin has rejected the chance to return to the Premier League with Everton.

The Barcelona full-back was signed in the summer on a 12-month contract. The 27-year-old has primarily been used as a squad player under Xavi so far.

He has only started in one league game and he has played a total of seven matches since arriving in the summer. The likes of Jules Kounde and Sergi Roberto have been ahead of him in the pecking order at right-back.

In an interview with the Spanish outlet Ara, he confirmed that his annual salary is less than €500,000 at Barcelona. That equates to roughly £8,500-a-week.

He told the newspaper: “Today, what worries me is playing football at the highest level.

“I am lucky that I have been doing it for many years and I am in a financially comfortable situation that allows me to enjoy what I want. In the end, we don’t need as much as we think and I live a very normal life. My priorities are not based on an economic issue.”

When asked about his future, the full-back added: “I don’t want to think about it. I know I only have one year signed and I want to enjoy it as much as possible.

“I will evaluate it at the end of the season, but I am very happy here, focused on the six months that remain in the season.”

Now, according to Sport, the defender has rejected the chance to join Everton as a move back to England doesn’t interest him.

As such, Frank Lampard will now have to evaluate other options as he searches for depth and answers to his many conundrums.

Everton need boost

There’s no denying that Everton are in real trouble at the moment. The club is currently only being kept off the bottom of the table by goal difference.

Lampard’s side have averaged just 0.78 points per game so far and they are projected to finish the season with just 30 points. They have conceded goals at a rate of 1.37 per game and they have only kept four clean sheets.

Everton have also been unsuccessful in their pursuit of Anthony Elanga. Lampard was keen on striking a loan deal with Manchester United, but Erik ten Hag reportedly put a block on the move.

Elanga could yet have a role to play for Man Utd in the second half of the season as they still remain in three cup competitions as well as fighting for the Premier League.

Following Everton’s 2-1 defeat at Southampton the atmosphere has turned toxic around Goodison Park. Fan protests have ramped up as the club is in real danger of being relegated.

Next up for Everton is another crucial game at the bottom of the league. They face a West Ham side who are on a similarly bad run of form at the moment.

If Everton don’t manage to secure a result at the weekend then they will have a mountain to climb in the second half of the season to avoid the drop.

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