The report states that the 25-year-old is ‘open’ to leaving Goodison Park after six years on Merseyside, which could force the club’s hand. The Toffees narrowly escaped the drop after finishing 16th under Lampard, retaining their Premier League status with only a game to spare.
And Newcastle dropping out of the race for the target man could leave Everton in a difficult position. While the Toon would have been able to spark a bidding war with their riches, backed by the Saudi-based Public Investment Fund, Arsenal will be operating on a shoestring budget after missing out on a top-four finish.
Mikel Arteta is keen to sign a striker this summer with Alexandre Lacazette expected to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the month. And if the player decides he wants to move to the north London outfit, it may leave Everton in the position of having to negotiate a much lower fee than if they were selling to Newcastle.