The signing of Aaron Lennon may have been a little bizarre for Evertonians at first, but as time has gone on the winger has grown popularity at Goodison Park and some suggest he’s changed our season since making the switch from Spurs. Now, Everton have a big choice to make in the summer transfer. Do we go ahead and sign him permanently or do we look for somebody else? Lets have a look at some of the key questions.
Since joining in February, has Aaron Lennon actually made an impact?
Aaron has played in every league game since he came in. When he has played, Everton have won 40% of our games (4 victories out of 10). All of them have been in our last five games. Lennon is a player who loves to run at the defence and to be honest; every time he plays he makes Everton look threatening.
Yes, he has made a big impact since he has joined Everton. However, players can change when turning from loan to permanent – a good example would be Gareth Barry. What would concern me is if he would feel more pressure on a permanent than he would be attempting to prove a point on loan.
Is Aaron Lennon better than the wingers we currently have?
There are five natural wingers who are currently in the Everton side – Aaron Lennon; Kevin Mirallas; Steven Pienaar; Aiden McGeady and Christian Atsu. Here are their stats per game on average. Here are the results:
Aaron Lennon tops the passing stats, making more forward (12.10), backward (10) and successful (17.20) passes than anybody else this season. He is much better to rely on if we want the ball going forward for Everton. Despite this he has one of the worst pass accuracy percentage’s in the side and has completed the same amount of key passes as Christian Atsu and is the 3rd best at creating chances (over Mirallas).
Surprisingly, Christian Atsu is one of the best at winning duels for Everton; having the highest successful take ons percentage; winning the highest percentage of duels; winning more aerial duels than anybody and having a higher percentage of aerial duels won than anybody else. Aiden McGeady completes more successful take ons per game than anybody else. Aaron Lennon’s stats are far from Christian Atsu’s, whilst Lennon wins us more free-kicks (apart from Pienaar – obviously) and wins more tackles than anyone else. Lennon isn’t the best in the duels section.
As expected, Kevin Mirallas tops the shooting section, having more shots and scoring more goals than anybody else (per game) in the Everton side. Aaron Lennon isn’t too far behind however, having the best-shot accuracy and is level on the amount of shots inside the area with Kevin Mirallas.
To conclude, Aaron Lennon isn’t a ‘stand-out’ winger in terms of statistics. Although he maybe better passing wise, his stats are well behind those of Christian Atsu (duels) and Kevin Mirallas (shooting). The stats don’t tell us why he is a much better winger than the likes that we already have.
What makes him above the rest?
His work rate. Lennon presses more than the other wingers we have – which is backed-up by the amount of tackles he has won and the amount of total duels he wins per game (2nd highest out of the natural wingers we have).
Here is Lennon’s heat map from a few weeks back against Newcastle. This backs his brilliant work rate. Another factor he has is his ability on the ball. He is so positive. The moment he receives the ball he wants to go forward, which is what we have been looking for desperately over the last few seasons.
Does he need to improve in certain areas?
End product. In the 10 matches he has played in he has created just 8 chances. This needs to improve. If I had a penny for every time I prayed Everton would sign a creative midfielder, I would be sitting in a luxury mansion wearing trousers made of money.
He doesn’t have very good crossing ability; if he works on that and his creativity as a whole then he is the perfect winger for us.
Is £6m for a 28-year-old too much?
Financially, we are one of the worst in the Premier League and nothing is going to change with the board we have. If we had the finances of teams like Spurs or Chelsea we wouldn’t need to be discussing this but hilariously and sadly, this would probably be one of Everton’s biggest transfers in the summer.
Aaron Lennon certainly has a few more years left in him, but I feel that wingers retire quicker than players in any other position. If Aaron was a few years younger I would say go ahead but it’s really questionable how long he has before he has to hang up his boots.
At this moment in time, I think £6m is too much for him. He is a great player for the short-term, but for the long-term we need to invest in someone younger and has the potential to carry Everton forward.
Honestly, from the moment we signed Aaron Lennon on loan I would never of thought we would get to this moment, discussing if we should sign him permanently? Although I’m slightly concerned about the £6m price tag, I would definitely go ahead with the deal. Lennon makes us look like the ‘last season Everton’ and is certainly likeable with the fans. He may not be a Gerard Deulofeu but he has made the same effect as he did. Would you sign Aaron Lennon?
Up the toffees.
Stats via Squawka.
Latest posts by Joel Parker (see all)
- Match Analysis and Review: Sunderland 0-3 Everton - September 15, 2016
- Analysing Everton’s Summer Transfer Window - September 5, 2016
- A Koeman Philosophy (Part Two): Predicting an Everton side under Ronald Koeman - August 14, 2016