World Football

Rafa can win Everton fans by signing Dumfries

“The freight train has arrived!” screamed BBC commentator Jonathan Pearce as the ever willing and relentless Everton target Denzel Dumfries scored for the Netherlands last week.

Former Toffees striker Romelu Lukaku may have caught the eye at Euro 2020 with his goals and Raheem Sterling with his infectious attitude but no player has arguably won more hearts than Dumfries, a player who could be arriving at Goodison Park this summer.

The rampant Dutch full-back exited the tournament after his country lost to the Czech Republic a matter of days ago but he excelled in remarkable fashion, catching the eyes of the top brass at Everton.

He was lung-busting in his pursuit of the ball down the right-hand side, battering attacking players into the middle of Qatar 2022 and dominating defensive lines.

Dumfries will have many suitors after the European Championships and his PSV release clause of €15m (£13m) is sure to attract plenty as well.

One of the clubs reportedly chasing his signature are Everton, now under the watchful eyes of Rafa Benitez.

The Spaniard will find it difficult to win over a portion of the Goodison Park faithful who despise him due to his Liverpool allegiances.

Should Benitez bring Dumfries to Everton?

Yes please!

No thanks!

No thanks!

Despicable signs of protests have been hung outside the 61-year-old’s house and he will have to go some distance to win them over.

One way he can do so is by acting shrewdly in the transfer market and signing the monstrous presence of Dumfries.

He is one of the most striking defenders in European football, combining immense physical robustness with defensive solidity and ruthless attacking.

What year did Everton wear this home strip?

The right-back scored twice during the competition and earned plenty of plaudits. Journalist James Benge called him “thrilling” while former Hull player, David Meyler, said Dumfries had been “unbelievable” in every game.

It’s hard to disagree with those assessments. The defender won three aerial duels and made 1.3 tackles per game for the Netherlands at Euro 2020.

For context, only one full-back in the entire tournament has been better aerially than the 25-year-old.

Dumfries also produced 1.5 shots per game, while he was fouled on 1.8 occasions per match, a remarkable tally for somebody playing in his position.

A quick look at his heat map (via SofaScore) from the competition tells you just how high up the pitch he plays with the vast majority of his touches and running coming in the final third.

Benitez will have plenty of targets in mind but he must ensure Dumfries tops the list.

With Seamus Coleman’s contract due to expire in a year’s time, the Toffees will need another right-back to slot in on that third of the pitch anyway.

AND in other news, Everton submit bid to sign 96-cap ace with “immense talent”, it’s Rafa’s first mistake…

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