Everton and Manchester City have finally agreed a deal to take Joleon Lescott to the City of Manchester Stadium and end the most protracted transfer deal of the summer. Most of the papers have focused on who Moyes will bring in to replace Lescott today, with a reported £22 million in his pocket who else will the Everton manager buy to enhance his squad?
The Daily Mail splutters that Moyes will use £10 million of his fighting fund to purchase Lokomotiv Moscow’s 24 year old skipper Diniyar Bilyaletdinov.
The left midfielder has been a one man club so far in his career. He made his debut in 2004 and since then he has made 149 appearances and scored 31 goals.
Under the tutelage of his father, who is also Lokomotiv’s coach, Bilyaletdinov has developed into one of Russia’s hottest prospects and was a part of Russia’s attack in Euro 2008 which so excited viewers.
His direct running style has earned comparisons with Andrei Kanchelskis, while his leadership skills have been rewarded with the captain’s armband. He is left footed which enables him to provide natural balance and width to any midfield.
Bilyaletdinov is definitely not a one-trick-pony who relies solely on pace to beat defenders. He is Lokomotiv’s playmaker and possesses an array of tricks, flicks and step-overs, which enable him to beat his man and deliver a telling cross or through ball to his strikers. His close control is also excellent allowing him to retain the ball in tricky situations.
The winger is not shy of shooting himself and has a rocket of a left foot, making him a goal scoring threat from free kicks.
However, standing at 6ft he should be an aerial threat from set pieces but his heading ability is weak. He also suffered a calf injury last season which kept him on the treatment table for 4 weeks.
With Everton needing to expand supply to its attackers, Bilyaletdinov would be an excellent purchase. Guus Hiddink, an excellent judge of young prospects has made him a main stay of the Russian team. He has also helped Lokomotiv claim only their second Russian title, with the starlet named as Young Player of the Year.
Bilyaletdinov has previously been linked with a move to Stamford Bridge but he has made it quite clear that he is unwilling to sit on the bench, making Everton an ideal destination as he would be fighting for a berth in the starting line up. This is a player who could really light up the Premier League and provide great enjoyment to the Gladys Street faithful.
Video evidence of Diniyar Bilyaletdinov can be seen here.