Everton eyeing 6ft 6 “revelation” who’d be a monster Branthwaite partner

    Everton will be looking to build on an excellent 2023/24 campaign next season, with the aim undoubtedly to pull further clear of any looming relegation troubles.

    Sean Dyche completed the impossible task of keeping the Toffees up, following various points deductions that saw the club docked eight points but still finishing 14 points clear of the relegation zone, with the defence largely to thank.

    His side only managed to concede 51 goals throughout the entire Premier League campaign, the best record of any side outside the top four, with Jarrad Branthwaite and James Tarkowski partnering each other in all but three matches.

    However, the club are already eyeing another defensive talent who could potentially come in and break up the Toffees’ near unbreakable partnership at Goodison.

    Everton monitoring goalscoring defender

    According to The Athletic, Everton are monitoring Lyon centre-back Jake O’Brien ahead of next season, with the Irish international catching the eye during his first season in Ligue 1.


    The 23-year-old made his international debut for his country earlier this week, following a campaign that saw him play a crucial role in Lyon’s qualification for the Europa League.

    O’Brien featured 27 times in the league for the French side, scoring on four occasions, finishing as the club’s second top scorer in the league during 2023/24.

    He’s enjoyed a rapid rise to stardom since his €1m move from Crystal Palace back in August 2023, achieving more than he or any fan could’ve imagined, with the centre-back producing some excellent stats that could see him be the perfect partner for Jarrad Branthwaite.

    Why O’Brien could be the perfect partner for Branthwaite

    When comparing the duo’s stats on FBref, Branthwaite appears to have the edge on the Irishman, winning more tackles and aerial duels during the last 12 months, but O’Brien has produced many other figures that the 21-year-old is unable to match.


    In their respective outings in the Premier League and Ligue 1, the Lyon defender has scored more and averages more goals per 90, with his average of 0.3 more than double that of the England international.

    O’Brien has also dominated with the ball at his feet during the 2023/24 campaign, completing over seven times more progressive carries out from the back and an 8% higher pass completion rate over the course of the season.

    How O’Brien and Branthwaite compare in 23/24










    Progressive carries



    Goals per 90



    Pass completion



    Tackles won



    Aerials won



    Stats via FBref

    The 6 foot 6 “revelation”, as described by journalist Zach Lowy, has demonstrated that he’s capable of making the step up to compete in one of Europe’s top five leagues, with the towering asset able to complement the perhaps more dogged Branthwaite, making them a perfect combination.

    It may be his first season competing at such a level, but if O’Brien is able to produce this after one year, the sky truly is the limit for the former Crystal Palace youngster.

    He’s valued at £10.1m, as per Transfermarkt, and should the Toffees be able to sign him for a fee close to his valuation, it would be an excellent piece of business, signing a player who would be a monster partner alongside Branthwaite.


    Everton could land Maguire 2.0 in “top-class” Branthwaite replacement

    He’s enjoyed an excellent campaign during 2023/24.

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