Everton are preparing to sell of a significant chunk of their squad this summer as they look to raise funds for new manager Rafa Benitez.
Benitez’s appointment has been met with scepticism from sections of the Everton support, given his obvious ties with rivals Liverpool, but he insists his allegiances will be quickly forgotten if he brings success back to Goodison Park.
To do that, though, he has admitted that players must be sold, and the Telegraph say that as many as six major players could be offloaded to raise funds.
Rodriguez is the headline name on the list, with Everton feeling they could fetch a substantial sum for the 30-year-old. Rodriguez enjoyed a productive season in his maiden year in the Premier League, but he is one of the Toffees highest earners, and the departure of Carlo Ancelotti – whose presence played a huge part in luring him to England – could spell the end of his time on Merseyside.
But he is far from the only one, as Andre Gomes, Bernard, Fabian Delph, Yerry Mina and Cenk Tosun could all be sacrificed to free up room for new signings.
Everton have spent big on transfers in recent seasons, and risk being in breach of financial fair play rules if they spend further without balancing it out with sales. Benitez admitted as much when he spoke to the press this week.
“Everybody knows that this club has spent a lot of money in the last few years, so you have to respect the FFP rules and you have to manage in the best way possible. If you have players with big salaries that normally aren’t playing then you want to find a solution, and this solution will mean you have money to spend on new players.
“This is something that is very common in modern football, so we will try to maximise what we have to be sure we can bring in quality and players that will make the squad strong.”
90min understands a new right-back is high on Benitez’s priority signings list, and there is significant interest in Norwich’s Max Aarons and PSV captain Denzel Dumfries, who starred for the Netherlands at Euro 2020.