Kevin Thelwell could be set for first Everton transfer test as contacts will prove key

Morgan Gibbs-White is a summer transfer target for Everton and the club’s director of football knows him well from Wolves.

In the short time that Kevin Thelwell's been in his Everton role, the vast majority of fans have been impressed.

Since being appointed director of football in February, taking over from Marcel Brands, the work he's carried out - so far - has been met with widespread approval.

Commendable work

Restructuring behind the scenes, such as splitting the academy director and under-21s coaching role - along with creating a new loans pathway manager role - have been saluted.

The focus on creating an identity and emphasis on youth - something that's previously been bemoaned by supporters - is welcome news.

Yet a director of football also has a remit focused on recruitment.

To the average match-goer, the job title is synonymous with bringing in fresh faces.

Thelwell's already played his part in prising James Tarkowski to Goodison Park this summer.

The centre-back admitted that he was persuaded to join Everton on a free transfer from Burnley after discussions with Thelwell and manager Frank Lampard.

But the Toffees' transfer business, in terms of incomings, is far from complete. Having narrowly avoided Premier League relegation last season, reinforcements are required.

And Thelwell's influence could prove pivotal to landing one transfer target.

Gibbs-White pursuit

Morgan Gibbs-White has been linked with a switch to Everton. He's supposedly stalling on signing a new Wolves contract and could depart his boyhood club.

Having impressed on loan at Sheffield United last term registering 13 goals and 10 assists, the attacking midfielder is highly coveted.

Rivalling Everton for Gibbs-White's signature are Crystal Palace, while Nottingham Forest are in the mix.

Palace have a gargantuan Conor Gallagher-sized hole to fill after the England international's much-vaunted loan spell last season. He's now gone back to Chelsea.

And Eagles boss Patrick Viera garnered plenty of plaudits for the job he carried out in his maiden season as Selhurst Park boss.

Palace finished a highly-commendable 12th and reached the FA Cup semi-finals.

But Thelwell's contacts at Wolves could prove crucial for Everton to get a deal over the line.

He was at the fulcrum of the Molineux club's rise from League One back to the Premier League - firstly as head of football development and recruitment before being appointed sporting director in 2016.

Indeed, Gibbs-White made his Wolves debut in January 2017 aged 17 when Thelwell was in his tenure.

Morgan Gibbs-White in action on Wolves debut against Stoke in January 2017. Picture: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

And the following year, Thelwell played a key role to ensure Gibbs-White signed a four-and-a-half-year deal.

After pen was put to paper, he said: “In the short time that he’s been with the first-team group, I think he’s proved that he’s more than capable of stepping up.

“I’d be very surprised if he didn’t make more appearances before the end of the season.

“He’s given himself a good shot of becoming a regular. He’s always had the potential, now he’s proving that he’s got the ability.”

Thelwell's previously made it clear that he's an admirer of Gibbs-White. He'll know what it takes to get the very best out of him and Lampard will undoubtedly trust his opinion.

Now this could be the first real test of Thelwell putting his contacts to full use and pulling off a master stroke.