Winger Yannick Bolasie has returned to Everton early after ending his loan spell at Aston Villa.
The 29-year-old was farmed out to the SkyBet Championship club by new manager Marco Silva after making just 17 appearances in the previous campaign having come back from a year out with a serious knee injury.
Villa head coach Dean Smith decided to cut Bolasie’s loan spell short, according to the Telegraph.
Smith felt that, since he did not wish to pursue a permanent deal for the 29-year-old , it made more sense to look for a long-term option now rather than pay Bolasie’s £70,000-per-week wages until the end of the season.
PA Sport however claimed the player, who looks destined for another loan spell, had made the decision to return to Goodison.
Bolasie played 21 times for Villa, currently 13th in the Championship, this season with nine starts and two goals.
However, the DR Congo international, who has made played just 32 times for Everton since his £25million signing from Crystal Palace in August 2016, has decided to extricate himself from the loan deal.
“Yannick Bolasie has returned to Everton Football Club today after he exercised an option in his loan agreement with Aston Villa,” said a Toffees statement.