Everton threatened in pursuit of €15m defender despite making contact

Date published: Tuesday 5th January 2021 12:12 - Samuel Bannister

Zeki Celik TEAMtalk

Everton have shown an interest in Zeki Celik, but now face competition to sign the Lille right-back, according to reports.

Celik has impressed for Lille since making the move to France in 2018. He already has 70 Ligue 1 appearances under his belt.

Lille are currently joint-top of Ligue 1 and will be keen to keep hold of their key players if they are to maintain their title pursuit.

However, Celik has been attracting interest from elsewhere for several months. They are facing a battle to keep him.

According to Fabrizio Romano, Everton have made contact with the player’s agents in the last few weeks.

The Toffees have struggled for depth in the full-back areas towards the start of the season. Therefore, they may need reinforcements to add competition.

Everton have recently had to change their formation to accommodate for injuries. While some players are returning, it has left him wondering if he needs more cover – and Celik could be an option.


However, Romano also adds that Italian side Roma – who Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti used to play for, coincidentally – want to take Celik to Serie A and have also begun talks with his agent.

Like Everton, Roma are also looking to strengthen at right-back. They initially wanted to bring Bryan Reynolds to Europe from the MLS, but are now looking at alternatives.

That could lead to a battle with Everton for his signature, although it is not yet clear if either side intend to make a formal offer in January.

Lille would reportedly want at least €15m to sanction a sale of the 23-year-old.

Celik open to Premier League move

If still interested, Everton may take confidence from comments Celik made about the Premier League in November.

At the time, Tottenham were heavily linked, and the Turkey international opened the door to a move to England.

“I heard that there was interest from Tottenham,” he told So Foot. “But I don’t know if they made an offer.

“In any case, I know that the Premier League is a league that I am attracted to. But I am happy to have stayed here when you look at the start to the season that we have had.”

READ MORE: Everton closing in on bumper new contract for key Ancelotti man


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