Why Everton should keep their eyes off Jean-Clair Todibo
As per the report, Barcelona have received two formal offers for the 20-year-old, one of which is rumoured to be from Everton. Premier League rivals Leicester City and Serie A giants AC Milan are the other potential suitors for the youngster.
Jean-Clair Todibo started his footballing education at French lower-division side Les Lilas before joining the youth ranks of Ligue 1 outfit Toulouse back in 2016. The highly-rated central defender initially impressed for the club’s reserve team before making his Ligue 1 debut during the 2018-19 season.
The 20-year-old was snapped up by Barcelona in January 2019 after making just 10 top-flight appearances for Toulouse.
Todibo made his La Liga debut for the Blaugrana against Huesca back in April last year but has since struggled to nail down a regular starting role at Camp Nou due to the presence of established names like Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti and Clement Lenglet.
The France U-20 international was loaned out to FC Schalke in January 2020 after making just 5 first-team appearances for Barcelona. Todibo made 10 appearances towards the back end of the previous campaign and was named Schalke’s Player of the Month for March.
Everton’s current defensive scenario
Everton had been reeling in and around the relegation zone during the first few months of the previous campaign but the appointment of Carlo Ancelotti at the helm stopped the rut as the Toffees eventually dragged themselves through to a 12th-place finish in the Premier League.
The Toffees conceded 56 goals during the season (29 goals in 18 games under Marco Silva and Duncan Ferguson followed by 27 goals in 20 games under Ancelotti).
Hence, it is safe to say Everton showed considerable improvement at the back following the Italian’s arrival, with centre-backs Michael Keane, Yerry Mina, and Mason Holgate all raising their individual levels as a part of a collective effort at the back.
The Toffees missed Mina (thigh muscle injury) and Holgate (calf problem) in the last few games of the 2019-20 season. But both are likely to be back in training shortly. That opened the door for 18-year-old January signing from Carlisle United, Jarrad Branthwaite, to get some valuable Premier League experience under his belt.
The youngster rose to the occasion with some impressive performances and that should be a massive boost for Everton’s backline heading into the upcoming campaign, with Mina, Keane, Holgate, and Branthwaite all set to compete for places at the heart of the defence.
Why Jean-Clair Todibo would be an absolute waste of a signing
Make no mistake, Jean-Clair Todibo is right up there with the top young talents in Europe at the moment, but it’s difficult to see how he would possibly fit into Ancelotti’s plans moving forward.
Everton seem to have just the right blend of youth and experience in their central defence and bringing in another youngster like Todibo would hardly make sense in footballing terms, especially due to the rise of Branthwaite.
The Toffees don’t really need a fifth centre-back to overload their squad, with Seamus Coleman very much an option for Ancelotti whenever he opts for a back-three system.
Taking the aforementioned factors into consideration, Everton don’t really need to go forward with a significant outlay on Todibo, whose arrival could possibly jeopardize the first-team prospects of Branthwaite.
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Everton scored only 44 goals in the Premier League last season, so Ancelotti should look to cast his rod into the summer transfer pond for some new signings further up the pitch. A potential move for Jean-Clair Todibo is not something that they need to prioritise at the moment.