Everton Reportedly Close to Sealing €24M Yerry Mina Transfer from Barcelona

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJuly 11, 2018

BARCELONA, SPAIN - MAY 20: Yerry Fernando Mina of FC Barcelona in action during the La Liga match between Barcelona and Real Sociedad at Camp Nou on May 20, 2018 in Barcelona, . (Photo by Power Sport Images/Getty Images)
Power Sport Images/Getty Images

Everton are reportedly closing in on the signing of Barcelona centre-back Yerry Mina in a potential €24 million (£21 million) switch. 

According to Ignasi Oliva Gispert of Goal, the Toffees are poised to sign the Colombia centre-back, who only joined the Blaugrana from Palmeiras in the January transfer window.

"With the expected arrival of Clement Lenglet from Sevilla and the established duo of Gerard Pique and Samuel Umtiti, Mina's prospects for minutes at Barcelona are dim," said Gispert, who added that Liverpool, West Ham United and Fenerbahce have also shown an interest in the 23-year-old.

Everton director of football Marcel Brands reportedly met with Barcelona on Monday to discuss a possible switch.

The defender is said to be keen to move to a team that will make him a key man, and Gispert has previously reported the Blaugrana are happy to sell the player if they can include a buyback option in any deal.

Mina was part of the Colombia side at the FIFA World Cup this summer and made his mark with three goals in the tournament, providing a major threat from set pieces. As noted by OptaJavier, not many players have showcased this kind of aerial dominance on such a big stage:

OptaJavier @OptaJavier

3 - Yerry Mina🇨🇴 is the first player to score three or more headed goals in a single #WorldCup since Miroslav Klose in 2002 (5). Hero. https://t.co/knqHVeGsBS

When Mina arrived at Barcelona there was a lot of expectation, as he'd been impressive during his time in Brazil.

Given his height, power and his obvious strength in the air, he can be a one-man wall when he's on his game. For Colombia alongside the dynamic Tottenham Hotspur centre-back Davinson Sanchez he was especially impressive.

Mina was excellent for Colombia at the World Cup.
Mina was excellent for Colombia at the World Cup.Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Still, when he was thrown into the team at Barcelona last season there were issues. He started just four league games for the Blaugrana and was particularly poor in the 5-4 loss to Levante, the only match Barcelona lost in the entire 2017-18 La Liga season.

As noted by Rafael Hernandez of Grup14, he did at least enhance his reputation at the World Cup:

Rafael Hernández @RafaelH117

I’m sad for Yerry Mina, he had a heroic performance and leaves as a hero. More to come!

It would be intriguing to see him in the Premier League, as Mina boasts the physicality to cope with the aggressive nature of English football.

The weaknesses in his game were exposed in the few appearances he had at Barca, though. 

Even so, football writer Jack Lusby feels as though the defender would be a good signing:

Jack Lusby @jacklusby_

If Everton are bidding €24m for Yerry Mina I’d say #LFC should be too. https://t.co/nNFZ6XNPx1

Everton do need to strengthen their options at the back. While Mason Holgate is a fine prospect, Michael Keane struggled in his first season at the club, and although Phil Jagielka can still do a job, the Toffees skipper is 36 in August.

Mina would provide strength, power and a threat from set pieces. Plus, with some stability and football on a weekly basis, those lapses that have punctured his game would surely lessen. The fact Barcelona are keen to include a buyback clause in the deal means they believe Mina could become a fine player in the future.