Saudi Arabian club Al-Ettifaq are in talks to sign Everton winger Demarai Gray.
Gray has made it clear that he wants to move on from Goodison Park. After failing to secure an exit on transfer deadline day, the 27-year-old took to Instagram to state that, “Everton fans have always been great with me but it’s so difficult to play for someone who don’t show you respect as a person.”
The player has since deleted the Instagram post, but it was quoted by BBC Sport.
The post appeared to suggest that Gray is unhappy to work under Sean Dyche. The manager, on his part, has suggested that the 5-cap Jamaica international could be brought back into the first team fold at Goodison Park, as reported by The Liverpool Echo.
At this stage, though, a move away from Merseyside for Gray seems like the best outcome for all involved.
Al-Ettifaq can still secure the services of the former Leicester City man at this time as the Saudi Arabian transfer window is still open.
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Everton must find Gray solution fast
Everton could come to regret their relationship with Gray disintegrating to this extent. If the £25,000-a-week attacker were still inclined to play for the club then he could have a positive impact for them this season.
At his best, Gray is capable of match-winning moments. He has previously been described as “electric” by BBC Sport pundit Garth Crooks. In an Everton squad short on individuals who can occasionally produce game-changing flashes of brilliance, Gray’s absence will surely be felt throughout this campaign if he does indeed leave.
However, Dyche can’t afford to allow this situation to deteriorate the atmosphere in the Everton dressing room. The club need to generate all the positivity and optimism they can, and if Gray’s presence might damage that then he needs to be moved on as a matter of urgency.
If Gray is to leave the club, then Everton will want talks with Al-Ettifaq wrapped up quickly.