‘Significant progress’ made in transfer for Everton man trusted by Rafa Benitez

Struggling Turkish Super Lig side Sivasspor are reportedly chasing a January deal for Everton centre-forward Salomon Rondon.

The Venezuela striker only arrived at Goodison Park on a free transfer in the summer, but already links to Turkey have emerged. The 32-year-old was understood to be a target for Besiktas, but now league rivals Sivasspor are keen.

The Sivas-based side have won just twice this season, but have drawn seven of their 12 games. They sit in 15th place. And coach Riza Calimbay has identified Rondon as the man who can turn his side’s many draws into wins.

According to Turkish news outlet FanatikSivasspor “will push” for a move for the attacker in the January window.

“Significant progress has been made for the player,” as per the source.

Rondon was a transfer deadline day signing by Rafa Benitez in August. The West Brom forward signed a two-year contract with the option for a third season to give Benitez some cover for Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

And just a couple of weeks after arriving the 6ft 1in forward was called upon after Calvert-Lewin picked up toe and quad injuries. He has since made seven appearances, including five Premier League starts, but he is yet to register a goal or assist.

 

The Toffees boss had the forward in his time at Newcastle, where he scored 12 goals in 33 games. In fact he was Benitez’s “number one transfer target” when he arrived in 2018 on loan from WBA.

Benitez then took the player to Chinese Super League side Dalian Professional before he followed the Spaniard to Goodison.


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Calvert Lewin close to a return

Whether he would be allowed to leave remains unclear, but he is trusted by Benitez.

The only other senior striker at the club is big-money flop Cenk Tosun, who looks likely to leave in January.

Calvert Lewin is on the mend. He confirmed this week that he would return in the next few weeks.

“We’ll see for the Merseyside derby,” said the striker at a Football for Change event earlier this week.

Regardless, Benitez will want more from Rondon, who cannot use the excuse of getting up to speed for his poor form so far.

Rondon’s last start was the 5-2 home defeat to Watford and Benitez’s patience may already have run thin with the player. Richarlison has started as the central striker in the last two games with Rondon on the bench.

READ MORE: Everton in the clear as summer resistance pushes Euro giant to Liverpool target

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