Frank Lampard has said he wants Anthony Gordon to stay at Everton and improve them rather than move to Chelsea – but admitted he could not guarantee the winger will still be at Goodison Park when the transfer window closes.
Everton rejected an offer, thought to be of up to £45 million, for the 21-year-old this week – but while Lampard believes Gordon has a huge value and is worth more than some players who have gone for high fees, he insisted that was not a negotiating ploy to get Chelsea to raise their bid.
And he said Gordon should feature against Nottingham Forest on Saturday as he told him to ignore the speculation and focus on football.
“Anthony is our player and we are not looking in a situation of where can we go in this deal,” he said. “We know his value because you see values of players moving that haven’t achieved what Anthony has. I want to think about what Anthony can do to improve the team.
“He has a huge value to the team and is a huge valuable asset to the club, one we have developed ourselves and brought through and who has a link to the fans. He is in the squad. As with any player he has to get on with his own game and play well.”
Lampard was asked if he could provide a reassurance that Gordon will remain on Merseyside and replied: “I think it would be naïve of me to assure anything.”
The Everton manager admitted that Dele Alli, who is a target for Besiktas, could leave, adding: “That is one for us to consider behind the scenes and for Dele to consider; for him to go would have to be right for everybody.”
Alli has only started one game for Everton, making just 13 appearances and failing to score, and Lampard said it was a joint decision, with the board, owner Farhad Moshiri and chairman Bill Kenwright, to sign him.
He preferred not to comment on why it has not worked out for the former Tottenham player at Goodison Park, arguing much of the criticism of him is unfair.
He said: “The moment Dele’s name comes in the media people queue up to have an opinion and it’s often negative and I don’t think that is fair to a young man whose talent took him on to the world stage at a young age.”
Lampard remains in the hunt for a striker as Everton look for cover for the injured Dominic Calvert-Lewin. He added: “It is definitely an area of the pitch that we do want to strengthen and we have to make sure it is the right player.”
Lampard confirmed that Allan is fit again but Abdoulaye Doucoure is out for three weeks. New signing Amadou Onana could make his first start when Everton host Forest.
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