Sky Sports’ Rob Dorsett has insisted Jordan Pickford, Alex Iwobi and Anthony Gordon all wish to stay at Everton.
It has been well documented that Everton are struggling in terms of finances and being able to afford transfers and now it appears they are unable to offer new contracts to their star players.
Despite sitting inside the bottom three and having crashed out of both domestic cups, a trio of high-profile players in the form of Pickford, Gordon and Iwobi are all said to be in discussions over extending their stays at Goodison Park in recent weeks and months, with Dorsett claiming all three are keen to stay.
That may well have come as a shock to the board as it’s usually the case that the best players wish to flee from clubs staring relegation in the face, as Everton know too well having signed James Tarkowski and Dwight McNeil from relegated Burnley last summer.
Despite the three players in reported contract talks, Dorsett has admitted live on air that the Everton hierarchy do not want to thrash out new terms anytime soon.
He said: “The three players, in particular; Anthony Gordon, two and a half years left on his deal. Remember, Chelsea were prepared to pay £60m for him, we reported in the summer. I don’t think it came to a bid, but they made it clear they were prepared to pay £60m – that’s gone now.
“Jordan Pickford, he has 18 months left on his deal and Alex Iwobi [has] 18 months, too. My understanding is that all three of those are quite keen to sign new deals, they want to stay at Everton. But there’s nothing forthcoming on the table from an Everton perspective right now in terms of an offer for those.
“Why is that? Is that because of the financial concerns? I’m told not. People I’ve been speaking to close to the club say look, they’ve got at least six months to deal with that, they’re not worried these players are going to go elsewhere, apparently – let’s focus on the ins and the outs elsewhere before we sit down with these guys and tie them up.”
The fact that three of Everton’s top players have told the club they wish to stay and sign new deals should have been enough to get them around the table and essentially be very open and flexible to what they can offer the trio as it will protect them as assets and allow Frank Lampard to build a squad around three stars.
However, goodwill from those players will only last so long and if they see the board not actively trying to reward them for their effort and commitment to the club then their agents could well start to offer them out to other clubs.
This is mainly for Iwobi and Pickford who will only have 12 months left on their contracts come the summer and that could well see Premier League sides move for them at a cut-price fee, something that certainly wouldn’t help the club’s coffers.