Toffees have been rinsed of £51.8m by Goodison Park flop

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Everton are, pound for pound, one of the worst-ran clubs in England. That is a fact largely irrefutable, given their tendency to spend big and underperform in recent years.

The change in ownership that saw Farhad Moshiri take a majority stake in the Toffees offered huge promise of a brighter future strewn with money and success.

Whilst the former has certainly been present in their transfer and managerial appointments, they have arguably veered further away from the latter as misinformed moves have stunted growth and led them down a very dark path.

They are now forced to wallow around the relegation zone, constantly battling the drop and wondering where the next win will come from. Sean Dyche is trying his best to turn them into a side to be feared once again, but so far it is a failed venture that seemingly nobody can fix.


Even the news that the Iranian billionaire was ready to sell up has been received poorly due to the problems that the potential buyers, 777 Partners, continue to be linked with.

No matter who it is that succeeds Moshiri, Goodison Park will be glad to see the back of him at least, with his hotly anticipated tenure one of the most promising, and therefore easily the most disappointing.

Who is Everton’s worst-ever signing?

To narrow down the worst acquisition of this era is a near-impossible task, due to the sheer volume of failures they have played host to.

Jean-Philippe Gbamin was one expensive flop who saw his career curtailed by injuries, whilst Davy Klaassen marked a clueless signing that left the club overloaded with number tens.


Everton’s Record Signings

Fee Paid, via Football Transfers


Gylfi Sigurdsson

€49.4m (£42.5m)



€39.2m (£33.7m)


Romelu Lukaku

€35.4m (£30.4m)


Amadou Onana

€35m (£30.1m)


Alex Iwobi

€30.4m (£26.1m)

Even Sandro, who was signed for just £5.25m, still managed to disappoint whilst absorbing plenty of finances through his lucrative wages.

A myriad of duds have come and gone from Merseyside, but unfortunately, some still remain.

Arguably the outstanding flop that has refused to depart is Michael Keane, who traded Burnley for the Toffees back in the summer of 2017. The hulking centre-back was one of numerous acquisitions from Ronald Koeman’s summer of vast overhaul, in which they broke their club record signing and also brought in stars such as Jordan Pickford and Wayne Rooney.

It was expected that the calm, cultured titan who had been at the heart of Dyche’s staunch backline at Turf Moor would help underpin the Dutchman’s defence for the next decade.

However, such an eventuality has not come to fruition, with the 30-year-old having spent six painful years on Merseyside without really making a positive mark.

A 6.45 average Sfoascore rating during this season is indicative of a man low in confidence and quality, with his only real campaign of success coming under Carlo Ancelotti.

Error-prone and often too slow to make up for his mistakes, talkSPORT pundit Perry Groves issued a particularly scathing rant back in 2022 after one torrid showing: “He always looks to me like he’s not in control of his own body. You know when someone’s always struggling or trying to make last-ditch tackles.

“He looks like he’s always struggling. He’s always a little bit nervy and not having a clear thought process. His positional play hasn’t been great.

“I know Everton as a team haven’t been particularly brilliant and haven’t been particularly well structured but as you get older and more experienced you get better in terms of your positional play, he’s actually got worse, he’s gone the other way.”

Keane’s continued presence at the club is a searing indication of both their transfer missteps of the past and the despicable present it has brought on for this fanbase, where they are yet to find a replacement within their shoestring budget.

However, his failure is not solely saved for on the pitch.

How much did Everton pay for Michael Keane?

The fiscal ramifications of the defender’s signature have been almost as lofty as the technical deficiencies they have been forced to endure on the pitch.

After all, the £30m spent to pry him from Turf Moor marked an astronomical fee for the time, made even more ludicrous given they spent the exact same on Pickford in that same summer, who has grown to become England’s number one goalkeeper and one of their few relegation heroes.

Meanwhile, Keane has only regressed, with his market value, as per Football Transfers, now sitting at just €7.4m (£6.3m).

How much does Michael Keane earn?

To exacerbate the failures, the 6 foot 3 titan also has a similarly lucrative salary to go alongside the bumper fee paid to sign him.

Sitting comfortably on his £80k-per-week wage, with every passing year Keane drains the Toffees of more precious funds that they seemingly cannot afford to spend.


Especially given the lack of return he offers, Moshiri and the fans must be furious. When adding the £21.8m earned from wages alone to the aforementioned transfer fee, in total this deal has cost the club £51.8m.

How much has Michael Keane earned in his career so far?

Having started his career with Manchester United, they swiftly worked out that the bumbling defender might not have a future for a side with aspirations at the pinnacle of the game.

Burnley were willing recipients of his services, where their low block played perfectly into his hands given the defence-first play style he boasted.


With a deal at Everton that seemingly continues to extend, Keane has actually amassed a huge sum of money throughout an admittedly fine career. In total that figure has now reached £25.5m, which is still less than the £30m paid for the Merseyside outfit to sign the defender.

When does Michael Keane’s contract expire?

As if to add to the frustration surrounding Koeman’s big disaster, that aforementioned purple patch under Ancelotti spurred the club to offer Keane a new deal.

Given his performances, it was not a decision widely scrutinised at the time, despite settling on an extra five years being somewhat ridiculous given his age.

Soccer Football - LaLiga - Rayo Vallecano v FC Barcelona - Estadio de Vallecas, Madrid, Spain - October 27, 2021  FC Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman looks on REUTERS/Sergio Perez

Another move that has unsurprisingly backfired, the Toffees will have to continue paying the former Blackburn Rovers loanee until 2025, when that £80k-per-week deal expires.

Does Michael Keane deserve to earn £80k-per-week?

It is fair to say that few at Everton are deserving of their big-money contracts given the recent performances, which have seen the last two seasons devolve into relegation scraps with narrow escapes on both occasions.

Given they are without a win in five Premier League games thus far in the new term, it is poised to once again be a year of immense turmoil.

Keane is just one in a long line of expensive failures that have set the club back years, and the hope will be that by the time they have moved into their Bramley-Moore Stadium, the bulk of this deadwood has been expunged in order to usher in a new, brighter era.

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