Everton’s young star ‘rejects’ Chelsea advances amid Newcastle and Arsenal interest

Onana only joined Everton in the summer, but finds himself a target of the top teams already just five months into his career in England.

Starring as one of Everton’s best players this season, Amadou Onana has reportedly rejected approaches from Chelsea for a move away in the January window.

Onana joined the club in the summer in a £35m deal from Lille and has been an ever-present this season in the heart of midfield.

Four sources have reported this today, with Sacha Tavolieri, Pieter-Jan Calcoen, Sebastien Denis and Santi Aouna all claiming Onana is focused on finishing the season with Everton amid interest from the west London club.

It’s claimed that Onana is an alternative option to main midfield targets Enzo Fernandez and Moises Caicedo. The Blues had already 18-year-old midfielder Andrey Santos earlier in the window, but Chelsea seem intent on bankrolling another move for a more established talent late in the window.

Onana has started 16 out of his 18 games in the league so far, producing one goal and an assist during his time at Goodison Park so far.

Of course, if Everton do get relegated then the value of Onana will decrease, given he would be a Championship player. That’s the worry for Everton, as the young Belgian was already attracting the attention of top clubs prior to his summer switch to Everton.

Owner Todd Boehly has prioritised young signings having already secured Carney Chukwuemeka, Santos, David Fofana and Beniot Badiashile and, clearly, Onana fits the bill for the squad Chelsea are trying to build.

Everton understand they have a talented star in their ranks, and they secured a five-year deal in the summer for Onana, meaning any deal to sell him early on into that contract will likely require a team to pay all of, if not more, of the £35m needed to secure him last summer.

His stats demonstrate a talented, young midfielder as he ranks between the 75th-91st percentiles for clearances, aerials won, non-penalty xG and tackles. Those numbers suggest he is an all-action midfielder whose attributes allow him to affect the game at both ends of the pitch.

Furthermore, he’s come into a struggling Everton side, one which has struggled for any consistency and it would be a difficult task for any player to come in and immediately perform. Onana has recieved plaudits for his mature performances as a relatively young man, and has adapted to a new league on top of that achievement.

The issue if they do get relegated would be keeping hold of the former Lille player, as Onana is no doubt one of their best players and most attractive assets - top teams will certainly look to him as a potential bargain if Everton are condemned to the Championship.

On the other hand, if they can stay in the Premier League and appoint a forward-thinking manager such as Marcelo Bielsa, for example, Onana could thrive in what would be an improved team. Although, he’s likely to star for whoever walks through the door next at Goodison.