Everton defender James Tarkowski has now hinted at what area he wants to see strengthened in order to avoid another relegation scrap this season.

The 30-year-old has admitted that ‘it’s tough’ to play without the focal point centre-forward that was absent for much of Everton’s season last year.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Everton FC - Premier League
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Indeed, in an interview with the official Everton website, the centre-half states that he is ‘just relieved’ that the Toffees managed to avoid the drop, but hints that the club must invest in their forward line.

Speaking about the final day victory over Bournemouth, Tarkowski said: “It was and credit to the lads because I thought we played pretty well.

It’s tough without playing with a real focal point of a striker with our style of play, but it was a great finish for the goal (from Doucoure). I’m just relieved.”

Everton must take advice from Tarkowski, and bring goals back to Goodison Park

Everton were short of striking options for the better part of the 2022/23 Premier League campaign and cannot afford to go into this season without reinforcements.

Main striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin featured in just 17 Premier League games for the Blues last season and was not available for the final day relegation decider against Bournemouth.

The £15m signing Neal Maupay managed just one Premier League goal in 27 games, while Ellis Simms, recalled in January from his loan at Sunderland, also scored once in 11 league appearences.

Everton FC v Newcastle United - Premier League
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So limited were his options, that Sean Dyche often resorted to playing winger Demarai Gray as a false nine, and it is undeniable now that the club must invest heavily in their forward line this summer.

It is likely to be a tightrope walk once more for the Toffees, but after two consecutive brushes with the drop, at least one centre-forward has to be a priority for Everton this summer.

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