Who is Duk? Lowdown on Everton linked attacker including potential transfer fee for Aberdeen star

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Sean Dyche’s side are rumoured to have an interest in the former Benfica talent who has been lighting up the Scottish Premiership this season.

Transfer talk might not be at the forefront of Everton supporters’ thoughts at the moment as the Toffees once again battle for Premier League survival.

Sean Dyche’s side sit 17th in the table after the most recent round of fixtures and travel to Crystal Palace this weekend looking to open up a gap on the bottom three. Despite their ongoing fight for survival, the rumour mill keeps turning and the most recent player to be linked with a summer move to Goodison Park is Aberdeen attacker Luis de Barros Lopes, aka Duk.

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Italian transfer guru Fabrizio Romano tweeted yesterday that Burnley are keen on the Portuguese born Cape Verde international and a report from the Daily Mail has since credited Everton with also having an interest. Scouts from the Merseyside club are said to have watched the 23-year old in action during Aberdeen’s 1-0 win away to Ross County last Friday where he scored his 18th goal of the season, slotting a composed finish past home keeper Ross Laidlaw after getting on the end of an excellent through ball from Liverpool loanee Leighton Clarkson.

Duk is only in his first season with the Dons, having signed in the summer from Benfica, but has been the breakout star of the Scottish Premiership this campaign. Here is everything Everton fans need to know about the forward including how much the Toffees might need to pay for his services:

Who is Duk? Age, previous clubs and statistics of reported Everton target

Duk, full name Luis Henriques de Barros Lopes, spent his youth career at many different clubs across his native Portugal before kicking off his senior career with Benfica B. He signed for Aberdeen last summer and has gone on to score 18 goals for the Dons this season including 16 in the Scottish Premiership.

He has become a fan favourite at Pittodrie, not just for his proficiency in front of goal but also for his willingness to pick up the ball in deeper positions and take on defenders with excellent runs. He’s a skilful player with bags of tricks in his locker who is also far stronger than his stature may make him appear. His full skill set was best displayed in March’s 3-1 win for Aberdeen over New Firm rivals Dundee United where he chased down and won a loose ball before holding off one defender, rounding a second and beating the keeper with an incredible back heel finish to open the scoring (see 1:15 mark in below video).

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How much would Duk cost Everton?

Although Aberdeen do not need to sell their star player, who is under contract till 2025, they may find it difficult to hold on to him if significant interest does emerge in the summer especially from clubs in the Premier League like Everton or Burnley who would be able to offer significantly higher wages than the Scottish club. Their club’s record fee received for a player came in the summer when talented young right back Calvin Ramsay joined Liverpool for over £4 million plus add ons. It is highly likely that they would expect that record to be broken again in order to allow Duk to leave.

As stated by Fabrizio Romano, Benfica are entitled to 50% of any fee the Dons sell their former player for. That statement was initially disputed by other sources closer to Aberdeen but has since been confirmed by the player himself. Therefore, it’s not unreasonable to expect Aberdeen would want to take in a profit similar to what they sold Ramsay for in the region of £3 million to £4 million, meaning the attacker could cost as much as £6 million to £8 million overall.

However, no Scottish club outside of Celtic or Rangers has sold a player for a fee close to those sort of numbers sinc Sunderland bought Craig Gordon from Hearts in 2007. Although Dons supporters will expect the club to hold out for big money, and with Duk also recently saying he was happy to stay in the North East of Scotland, there may also be the expectation that the player is allowed to treat the club as a stepping stone towards playing in the Premier League.

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