Everton are planning a new approach to buy Maxwel Cornet from Burnley, but now face competition from Fulham, according to reports.
Cornet has been the subject of Premier League interest since suffering relegation with Burnley. A clause in his contract means he can leave the Clarets for a fee of £17.5million this summer.
He missed a recent pre-season match with them amid interest from Everton. However, the initial approach from the Toffees was later revealed to have been unsuccessful.
They were planning to take Cornet on loan with an option to buy in the event of their own Premier League survival. In contrast, Burnley would prefer a sale this summer.
Eager to win the race for someone who would be useful to them after the sale of Richarlison, Everton are now said to be drafting up new plans regarding Cornet.
According to the Daily Mail, they are now willing to try again by paying up front for the Ivory Coast international, who is willing to leave Burnley.
Frank Lampard is supposedly an admirer of the former Lyon star, who scored nine Premier League goals last season. Therefore, director of football Kevin Thelwell has not travelled for Everton’s pre-season tour in the USA, so he can concentrate on finalising deals such as this one.
However, a separate report from the Daily Mail has claimed that Everton are not the only contenders to lift Cornet back up to the top flight.
A more recent write-up suggests Fulham are focusing on the 25-year-old. The Premier League newcomers were hoping to take Federico Bernardeschi after Juventus released him, but the Italian has joined Toronto instead.
Therefore, Fulham are now looking for alternative targets out wide. Cornet has cropped up on their radar again after they showed an initial interest when the transfer window opened.
However, the update reveals that Cornet has already turned down another promoted club, Nottingham Forest. The Daily Mail reiterate that Everton are still strong contenders for his signature, but Fulham have submitted their own offer.
Everton may remain best choice for Maxwel Cornet
Hence, if both clubs end up matching the asking price, it could be up to Cornet to pick between them.
Perhaps the safest choice if Cornet wants to establish himself in the Premier League again would be Everton.
Although they hovered above the relegation zone last season, their top-flight status has been intact since the 1950s. Meanwhile, Fulham have suffered relegation back to the Championship after their two most recent promotions.
What’s more, Richarlison’s move to Tottenham has opened up a space for Cornet to take in Lampard’s lineup. His versatility means he could also play as a wing-back, where they arguably lack depth.
It has not been the most stable time for Everton recently. But they still seem like the best option for Cornet and are working to make him theirs.