Everton keeper target considers transfer request as backline shapes up

Alex Meret is considering asking Napoli to leave amid links with a transfer to Everton, according to reports in Italy.

Meret is one of the best Italian goalkeepers, but is no longer a guaranteed starter at Napoli. This season, he has had to share gametime with former Arsenal shot-stopper David Ospina. Neither have established themselves as the outright first choice.

At the age of 24, Meret would rather be playing week in, week out. However, he will have to wait to find out the identity of Napoli’s next coach to see if he will be able to get those opportunities without leaving.

Gennaro Gattuso is expected to leave the Serie A side at the end of the season. There is a chance his successor would put his faith in Meret, but there are no guarantees.

According to Gazzetta Dello Sport, Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis will try to persuade his next coach to stick with Meret as number one. However, the new boss will have the final say.

That means Meret will have to consider his options. If it becomes clear he isn’t going to pull clear of Ospina in the hierarchy, he may seek a move away.

Everton would be a potential destination. Meret is seen as an upgrade on Jordan Pickford, while there are also doubts about Robin Olsen’s long-term future after his loan spell from Roma ends.

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Coincidentally, Roma are also one of the teams battling for Meret, as are their Serie A rivals Inter.

But Meret has already worked with Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti before from their time together in Naples. That may be a crucial factor in tempting him to Merseyside.

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Everton backline taking shape

Meanwhile, Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher believes two players in front of the goalkeeper at Goodison Park are putting the foundations in place for a successful partnership.

Former Liverpool defender Carragher cast doubt on the credentials of Yerry Mina. However, he thinks Michael Keane and Ben Godfrey could cement their places for years to come.

“I think he [Godfrey] is going to be a top centre-back and I think in Keane and Godfrey it’s a good partnership,” he told Toffee TV.

“Yerry Mina, I think he’s done well for Everton, but I’m yet to be massively convinced really. I do look at Keane and Godfrey as the future at centre-back.”

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