Everton weren’t in a position to turn down Fuham’s bid for Alex Iwobi last week.
Accoding to The Athletic, the Toffees had previously made tying the midfielder down to a new contract a main priority.
However, after failing to reach an agreement with Iwobi, they decided they couldn’t really say no to Fulham’s £22 million offer.
Iwobi had looked set to return to action as usual as Everton faced Sheffield United at the weekend, however he instead completed a permanent move to Craven Cottage the previous day.
The Nigerian joined Marco Silva’s side on a five-year contract after the Toffees had accepted a bid for his signature on transfer deadline day.
Iwobi’s departure came as a huge surprise as Everton were already lacking squad depth and were now parting ways with one of last season’s best performers.
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The report has claimed that Everton initially saw getting Iwobi to agree to a new contract as a top priority and had already made him a number of offers, however they were unable to get the 27-year-old to put pen to paper.
With only a year left on his contract at Goodison Park, Everton quickly decided they weren’t in the financial position to turn down Fulham’s £22m bid and instead let him leave to avoid him going for free in less than 12 months.
Can Everton live without Alex Iwobi?
With the midfielder unlikely to sign a new contract on Merseyside, Iwobi looked dead set to leave the club on a free transfer next summer. However, they have instead made a very decent fee less than a year earlier.
Keeping Demarai Gray could also be very important in Iwobi’s exit, though they will definitely need to strengthen in that position and could opt to look into the free transfer market themselves. One player that could potentially fill that void is Jesse Lingard, who is still without a club after leaving Nottingham Forest.