Marco Silva has discussed Everton’s transfer activity after missing out on deadline day deals for Wilfried Zaha and Marcos Rojo.
Everton had pursued Crystal Palace forward Zaha throughout the summer, though were frustrated in their efforts to sign the 26-year-old with Palace rejecting their offer and reluctant to sell their prized asset.
Having failed in their pursuit of Zaha, Everton did complete the late £35m signing of Alex Iwobi from Arsenal, and Silva insists the Nigerian was one of the club’s ‘main targets’.
“We have our targets. Alex was one of our main targets,” Silva said at his pre-match press conference.
“When you are planning a squad, we plan with some names. I did my job with the names for our football structure.
✍️ Signed, sealed, delivered!
— Everton (@Everton) August 8, 2019
The Merseyside club travel to face Palace in their Premier League opener on Saturday, though Silva is unsure whether Zaha will face his side having seen the club block his move to Goodison Park.
“We had names, the market was difficult. When we lost Lookman we looked for one winger, not two. We have a very good player.
“It is out of my control. It was not just our club interested in Zaha.
“He is a very good player but he is not our player. If he plays or not it is for Roy to decide not for me.
“It will be a tough game with or without.”
The arrival of Iwobi was Everton’s seventh senior signing of the summer window. The club have completed deals for midfield trio Andre Gomes, Fabian Delph and Jean-Philippe Gbamin, whilst highly-rated Juventus forward Moise Kean has also arrived in a £30m deal.
Huddersfield goalkeeper Jonas Lossl moved to Goodison on a free transfer to provide competition and back-up for Jordan Pickford, with Monaco right-back Djibril Sidibe also joining on a season-long loan deal.
Silva admits he is happy with his side’s business, despite having lost the likes of Idrissa Gana Gueye and Ademola Lookman.
“When you plan one window, and we did last season, it is always to improve our squad to give me better solutions,” he continued.
“Our squad is deeper but you have to look for the general picture.
“We lost two important players. It is not easy to look to the Premier League and see two important players lost.
“18 players left the club this summer. We signed seven. Let’s see what will happen until the end of August.
“If you look for the money spent and the money come in we spent £28m.
“I know you like to just look for one way but we have to look for all scenarios.
“We are happy, we always want more, but we are happy.”
The Toffees also enquired about a deal for Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo as they looked to bolster their defensive options, but despite deadline day talks, a deal for the Argentina international also failed to come to fruition.
Having seen long-serving captain Phil Jagielka join Sheffield United and Kurt Zouma return to parent-club Chelsea, Everton’s options at centre-back look depleted, with Michael Keane, Yerry Mina and Mason Holgate left as the club’s only recognised central defenders, a situation Silva believes is far from ideal.
“It is what it is. It is football. It is not the best scenario to start the season with three players.”