A midfielder has always expected to be high on Frank Lampard’s Everton summer shopping list.
Plenty of supporters have concurred it’s an area of the squad that needs attention.
With Fabian Delph and Gylfi Sigurdsson released, along with Donny van de Beek returning to Manchester United after an underwhelming loan spell, reinforcements in the engine room are required.
As current options, Everton have Abdoulaye Doucoure, Allan, Tom Davies, Dele Alli, Andre Gomes and Jean Philippe-Gbamin at their disposal.
But many would agree that added quality is needed, while there’s every chance some of those currently under contract could depart.
Among the host of midfielders linked with Everton during the summer transfer window is Harry Winks.
Lampard, according to Sky Sports, has ‘given the green light for initial talks with Tottenham’.
Winks made just nine Premier League starts in total last season and dropped down the pecking order after Antonio Conte took charge of Spurs.
What’s more, he’s not won an England cap since November 2020.
Therefore, some Evertonians have been sceptical about potentially signing Winks and have questioned if he would be improvement on what Lampard already has at his disposal.
But the Toffees boss has been a long-time admirer of the 26-year-old - and could get his career back on track.
What’s been said
Before going into management, Lampard was a regular pundit for BT Sport’s Champions League coverage.
He was on duty when Tottenham clinched a 1-1 draw against Real Madrid in October 2017 - and heaped praise on Winks’ performance that night.
Lampard said: “Looking at the first 15 minutes, I was worried for him because he was playing on his own in there - and he did to an extent.
“But his passing was fantastic, he went all over the place. His defensive positioning sometimes can be overlooked but he always seems to be in good positions considering he has so much ground to cover.
“It’s very impressive and exciting for us as Englishmen to have a midfielder, especially.”
‘He does that job so well’
Lampard was equally as complimentary when peaking before the return clash in London - when Spurs were using Wembley for home games.
Tottenham would deliver a memorable 3-1 victory over that season’s eventual champions, with Winks featuring for 66 minutes.
Prior to kick-off, Lampard said: “I do rate him, certainly. He showed great maturity in Madrid in the first game and for England when he played.
“I think we bemoan the fact that midfield players, in England, can link-up play, receive it off our back men, be comfortable in all positions and move the ball forward and quickly.
“He does that job so well. He doesn’t want too many touches on the ball, he receives it and plays forward.
“Credit to him because he’s come in there seamlessly this season.”