Zenit striker Dzyuba confirms Everton interest
Artem Dzyuba has confirmed Everton have previously been interested in him amid claims the Toffees are preparing a January swoop for the Zenit St Petersburg ace.
Everton had a busy summer in the transfer window, bringing in Moise Kean, Fabian Delph, Alex Iwobi, Andre Gomes and Jean-Philippe Gbamin to bolster the ranks at Goodison Park.
However, Silva still wants additional recruits for his first-team squad and director of football Marcel Brands is working hard behind the scenes to find more new talent.
Some reports recently have indicated Blues scouts have watched Dzyuba in action in the past month and there were claims the club had representatives at Russia’s win over Scotland at Hampden Park on Friday, where he scored in his country’s 2-1 win.
Now the 31-year-old has admitted the Premier League club wanted him last year but a move never materialised and he insists he’s happy at Zenit, despite ongoing speculation linking him with a switch to the Merseysiders.
Dzyuba told Sport24: “I signed a contract with Jorge Mendes and his company. Back in the winter transfer window, there was a chance for me to leave Zenit. I understand Everton were interested in my services. But I didn’t want to leave.
“Back then, we had a chance to win the Russian Superleague title, and we did so. So, I can say that I did the right thing. In the summer, I also hoped something would happen, but it didn’t. There were just talks, so I am now at Zenit and I am very pleased with that.”
The Russia captain is out of contract at Zenit at the end of the current season and has made a good start to the 2019-20 campaign, scoring four goals and grabbing three assists so far, while he’s found the back of the net for the Premier Liga side on 56 occasions in total.
Kean was used as a central striker in Everton’s last game, the 3-2 victory over Wolves before the international break, while Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Cenk Tosun are other options up front for Silva, who has also deployed Richarlison as a lone frontman in the past.
Aidan Perkins is a senior journalist that specialises in football stories. Aidan, a Liverpool fan, also has a broad knowledge of several other sports.