Everton face transfer battle with Premier League rival for potential Onana replacement

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Everton face a battle with Nottingham Forest to sign midfielder Florentino Luis from Benfica, according to reports. 

Making his debut in February 2019, Florentino has become a regular in the Benfica side, playing 131 times for the club across all competitions, scoring once and providing four assists, winning two league titles along the way.

The 24-year-old finished 2023/24 top among Benfica players for tackles (79), second for interceptions (49) and with a pass accuracy of 89.03%, providing a steady presence in front of his defence, with and without the ball.

“He is the kind of player every coach would like to have in their squad,” former Benfica coach Joao Tralhao told GOAL of Florentino in 2023.

“He’s an amazing boy, a hard worker, calm, professional, always prepared to listen and he is a proper team player. He doesn’t think only of himself.”

Could Florentino replace Amadou Onana?

Even before the summer transfer window opens, it’s understood that central midfield is one of the key areas of concern for Everton this summer. That need would only become more urgent should rumours linking Amadou Onana to Arsenal be true.

According to the Liverpool Echo, the Toffees are pursuing a loan deal for out-of-favour Manchester City star Kalvin Phillips. However, it looks like he’s not the only target.

A report from Portuguese outlet Record (via Sport Witness) states that Everton have been interested in Florentino since January and even tried to bring the 84-time Portugal youth international to Goodison Park at the end of that transfer window.

The report also states that Benfica value Florentino at €30m, meaning he would only become a more realistic option should Onana be sold, given Everton’s precarious position when it comes to Premier League Profit and Sustainability Rules. The Toffees are, of course, not out of hot water having already suffered an eight-point deduction last season.

It’s understood Nottingham Forest — another side hit with a points deduction in 2023/24 — are also preparing to join the race for Florentino, who Benfica would rather sell in a bid to keep Arsenal and Man Utd target Joao Neves around for another season.

More Stories Amadou Onana Florentino Luis Kalvin Phillips

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  1. Surely to god forest won’t beat us in that race if it’s a two horse race as long as can reach agreement with benfica & agree personal terms with player. Try tie him down on a long term contract with a release clause inserted in contract. I doubt we will have many big money signings this summer due to the shambolic PSR. I have read Everton may take another points deduction for start of next season so can build a strong squad hopefully the rumour of Robert Kraft owner of New England Patriots franchise with a net worth of £11.1B is considering a potential move for the club fingers crossed

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