With Everton reportedly in the market for centre back reinforcements, and the likes of Jonny Evans being mooted as an arrival, are they missing the opportunity to snap up a well-rated free agent?
Manchester United are rumoured to have offered the Toffees the Northern Irishman as a makeweight for Seamus Coleman as Louis van Gaal chases the full-back.
But could Roberto Martinez use their focus to sneak in and seal the signing of United target Ron Vlaar?
The former Aston Villa man is currently without a club, and having been linked to a move to Old Trafford all season, it is somewhat of a surprise that he has not joined the red half of Manchester yet.
That inactivity could be an opportunity for other pursuers to jump in and bag the 30-year-old.
While he wasn’t a regular fixture last season, Everton have lost the services of Sylvain Distin this summer, and only have Phil Jagielka and John Stones as senior centre backs.
Having been linked with other defenders such as the potential West Ham defender Angelo Ogbonna, it’s clear defensive reinforcements are a target for the Merseyside club.
Vlaar performed credibly throughout much of the 2014-15 season after dazzling for Holland at the World Cup, and while his form may have taken a dip in the latter half of the campaign, he has undoubtedly vital Premier League experience.
And with no club to negotiate with, any move would ensure any suitors would be able to lure him in without the risk of paying a big transfer fee for his services.
This is in contrast to the likes of Evans who would obviously take a chunk out of any fee they would receive for Coleman, and Crystal Palace’s Scott Dann.
The Liverpool Echo reported last month that the 28-year-old was on Everton’s radar, but his current club are commanding a £10m fee to release him from his contract.
Such a sum for a player just two-years-younger than Vlaar, with no international experience looks a hefty price to stump up.
Instead Martinez and co could do far worse than turning to the former Villa man to shore up their threadbare back-line.
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