Everton will ramp up their search for a new centre-forward this week, as Frank Lampard pleads for patience following the club’s poor start to the season.
Lampard is targeting more firepower ahead of the home match against Nottingham Forest on Saturday, with Southampton’s Che Adams firmly in his sights.
Everton have lost their opening two games and are clearly lacking potency in attack, following the sale of Richarlison to Tottenham and another injury to Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Adams, the Scotland international, is high on Lampard’s list of potential signings but Everton’s finances remain a serious threat to hopes of making more additions.
“Dominic has been injured for two weeks and it is a five- to six-week injury, so we have to have a bit of perspective,” Lampard said. “We are not going to be foolish. We are going to try to find the right player that can maybe help us in the short term, but in the long term complement the fact we have Dominic.”
Yerry Mina, the centre-back, has an ankle ligament injury which will keep him out for two months, yet Lampard is staying optimistic.
Summer signings Conor Coady and James Tarkowski already appear a potentially outstanding partnership in defence, while there was an encouraging debut at Villa Park for new £33 million signing Amadou Onana as a late substitute.
But results already indicate Lampard is facing another year of struggle after last season’s dramatic escape from relegation. “When you bring in new players, and are trying to settle players in as well as getting results, you are trying to find a solution very quickly,” Lampard said.
“It is important to stay confident, it is very easy to be reactive to these things. We have lost two games and when you are in and around the bottom of the league, like we were last season, you have to get used to losing at times, unfortunately. Then you find out what the mentality of the group is to get better.
“The squad is moving in the direction that we want it to, the performances have been pretty good, the next bit is to get points on the board – it is as simple as that.”
Lampard’s former England team-mate Steven Gerrard emerged with three points after a lively encounter, with goals from Danny Ings and Emiliano Buendia. Everton’s late response was an own goal from their former left-back, Lucas Digne.
Villa’s afternoon was tarnished by what appeared to be a serious injury to new £26 million defender Diego Carlos, who was taken off in added time. Carlos will have a scan today after injuring an ankle and Achilles.