Your lunchtime Everton headlines for Wednesday, March 22.
Inside story of Ellis Simms rise as coach reveals hidden talent Sean Dyche can exploit at Everton
Ellis Simms’ school football coach insists he wasn’t surprised to see his former pupil net a first Premier League goal for Everton at Chelsea while lifting the lid on one of the striker’s hidden talents that Sean Dyche might be tempted to try and exploit.
Oldham-born Simms plundered his first senior strike for the Blues when he outmuscled the Londoners’ £33million defender Kalidou Koulibaly before crashing the ball past the world’s most-expensive goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga to earn a 2-2 draw with just a minute to go at Stamford Bridge on Saturday night. After spells with Blackburn Rovers and Manchester City in youth football, Simms joined Everton aged 16 but after making his senior debut for the club last season – also against Chelsea away – he was loaned out by the club for the third time last July, joining Championship side Sunderland.
Recalled to Goodison Park in January, the 22-year-old has subsequently made a further half dozen first team appearances for Everton but finding the net in a top flight match represents a significant milestone for the striker. Tim Norman, Deputy Headteacher at Mills Hill Primary School in Chadderton admits that Simms’ achievement has become the talk of the staffroom.
He told the ECHO: “I’ve been watching Ellis’ rise over recent years and I know he’s gone out on loan a few times but along with other staff members, I’ve been following his progress since he was recalled by Everton in January. I tend to watch Match of the Day so when I saw him put the ball in the back of the net on Saturday night, it was a great moment.
Read the full story, here.
Everton could be on high alert as January 'target' set to be free agent in the summer
Lyon striker Moussa Dembele will "definitely leave" the Ligue 1 side at the end of the season amid Everton links according to a report.
The Blues were heavily linked with the former Celtic goal-getter during the January transfer window as they made a late scramble to bolster their forward ranks. Ultimately, their efforts to sign a striker were in vain as they saw speculated approaches for Viktor Gyokeres, the aforementioned Frenchman, Beto and others rebuffed.
Sean Dyche, who arrived on the eve of the winter deadline, has had his hands tied in terms of selection options for the remainder of the season. Dominic Calvert-Lewin has been sidelined with ongoing injury troubles leaving Neal Maupay and Ellis Simms - the latter opening his account in Saturday's draw with Chelsea.
According to Sky Sports Deutschland reporter Florian Plettenberg, the 26-year-old will not extend with the France giants at the end of the season thus becoming available on a free transfer.
Read the full story, here.
Doucoure revival should spark Everton competition with challenge for Onana
Graham Potter namechecks four players in expert view on new 'tough' Everton
Marco Silva sent off in triple red card drama that could hand Everton a big boost
Abdoulaye Doucoure has new Everton role as Sean Dyche reveals big change behind scenes
- National media spot 'unlikely hero' for Everton in Chelsea draw