Bengaluru, April 9: Jordan Pickford is reportedly facing a fight for his future in Everton as the Toffees consider flogging the England No 1 for £50million and plan on replacing him with Burnley's Nick Pope, who will cost relatively low.
Pickford landed in hot water last week when a video of him allegedly giving a black eye to a bouncer during a brawl in Sunderland leaked on social media. He faced disciplinary action at the Toffees though boss Marco Silva and recruitment chief Marcel Brands are more concerned about his behaviour between the sticks.
And it is that which may tempt them to sell Pickford, who arrived from home-town club Sunderland for £30m two summers ago.
Pickford's disastrous blunder in the final seconds of December’s Merseyside derby, which gifted Divock Origi a goal to help rivals Liverpool win was one of the examples that could have prompted the Everton hierarchy in coming to this decision.
Even last month, Everton threw away a two–goal half-time lead at Newcastle to lose 3-2, and he was again at fault.
Pickford later had to answer to Silva about last Sunday’s brawl but his inconsistent form, decision-making and distribution is of greater concern to his manager and Brands.
Dutchman Brands revealed last week that while he has already picked summer transfer targets Everton will also have to sell to raise funds.
Theo Walcott, Cenk Tosun, Morgan Schneiderlin, Phil Jagielka and back-up keeper Maarten Stekelenburg are among those who will go, and that will also lower the wage bill which is another necessity.
The sale of Pickford, as England’s goalkeeper, would add to the kitty and Tottenham and West Ham will be interested in the former Sunderland keeper. However, it is a big question whether anyone would pay as much as £50million for the often-errant keeper.
Burnley are understood to want £10m for Pope, who won one cap before dislocating his shoulder last July. Having lost his Turf Moor place to another Three Lions keeper in Tom Heaton, he has made only two FA Cup appearances since then.