Allan & Abdoulaye Doucoure: Everton target pair for midfield rebuild20 August 2020
Everton are in talks with Napoli over a deal for £30m-rated midfielder Allan and have renewed their interest in Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure.
Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti managed Allan at Napoli and reports in Italy suggest the 29-year-old is set to reject interest from Atletico Madrid.
Doucoure, 27, wants to leave Watford after their Premier League relegation.
Ancelotti is determined to revamp Everton's midfield after they struggled towards the end of last season.
Brazil international Allan is seen as the ball-winning competitor the Toffees require, while Everton - then managed by Marco Silva - had a £30m bid for Frenchman Doucoure rejected last summer.
The Hornets are likely to demand at least £25m for the midfielder.
Despite being an overpopulated area of his squad - including the likes of Tom Davies, Fabian Delph, Andre Gomes and Gylfi Sigurdsson - Ancelotti wants to inject fresh life into the midfield.
The 61-year-old Italian had hoped to sign Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg from Southampton, but the Dane opted for Tottenham.
Everton director of football Marcel Brands is trying to lower the club's wage bill after several seasons of heavy, and often unsuccessful, spending before more cash is laid out on signings.
Midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin has joined Nice, while striker Oumar Niasse left at the end of his contract and long-serving defender Leighton Baines retired but Brands wants to cut the squad and the wage bill even further.
It may mean Everton playing a long game before doing deals but it is likely Ancelotti will still want high-profile reinforcements before the Premier League season starts on the weekend of 12 September.
The Toffees had a deal lined up for Lille centre-back Gabriel Magalhaes earlier this year but negotiations, which were moving towards a successful conclusion, were disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic and the 22-year-old Brazilian is now likely to join Arsenal.
They have also held discussions with Atletico Madrid over Colombia right-back Santiago Arias, 28.