Lacina Traore close to Everton switch

[one_fourth last=”no”]File:Everton F.C. (2013).svg[/one_fourth]Everton are close to securing a loan deal with Monaco for their tall forward Lacina Traore, which will see the striker play the remainder of the season with the Toffees. Traore just moved to big spenders Monaco from Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala at the start of January but with Radamel Falcao, vice captain Valère Germain and James Rodríguez all vying for spots up front, Traore’s game time is sure to be limited this season.

There are heavy rumours circulating about the future of Colombian superstar Falcao and he may leave Les Rouge et Blanc at the end of the season, with Traore bought in to fill a gap if he does indeed leave. Traore nearly signed for West Ham on loan just a few days ago and was even handed a work permit for the deal but the transfer collapsed and now Everton boss Roberto Martinez has stepped in to take the Ivory Coast forward to Goodison Park.

The Spanish boss confirmed: “Lacina is a player I really like. He is someone who would fit in really well in the role we want, he is a very talented footballer and has already had a couple of moves costing nearly £30m. We need to go through all the necessary routes to try and hopefully we can do that over the next few days.”

The Toffees have been in inspirational form since Martinez took over from David Moyes at the start of the season and they are just one point off of a Champions League place. The Spaniard is looking to add some depth to his squad and he has highlighted his need for a natural goalscorer as they continue their push for a coveted European place.

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Traore, who scored 12 goals in 24 appearances during the 2012-2013 season, played alongside Chelsea forward Samuel Eto’o at Anzhi after joining from Kuban Krasnodar in June 2012. At Kuban he made 38 league appearances, scoring 18 times and he has fared well at previous clubs too, playing 27 league games for Stade d’Abidjan and scoring 19 goals.

He had a particularly fruitful 3 year spell with Romanian club CFR Cluj between 2008-2011 snapping up a Liga I title, the Cupa României and 2 Supercupa României. His recent good form in Russia has seen him called up to the Ivory Coast squad recently and he has gone on to make 7 senior caps for Les Éléphants, scoring 4 goals already.

Traore will hope a successful stint with Everton in the Premier League will boost his chances of making Sabri Lamouchi’s squad for the upcoming World Cup Finals in Brazil this summer.

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