Kevin Campbell believes the potential signing of Burnley centre-back James Tarkowski will boost Everton’s back-line and go a ‘long way’ to sorting out their defensive problems.
Tarkowski has been strongly linked with a summer transfer to the Blues and is reported to have already undergone a medical at the club after he made clear he wouldn’t be extending his contract with Burnley.
The Mancunian, now 29, joined the Clarets from Brentford in February 2016, having started his career at Oldham Athletic. Capped twice for England, Tarkowski has made more than 30 Premier League appearances over the past five seasons.
“I think it’s a much-needed signing,” former Everton favourite Campbell told Goodison News.
“Tarkowski is a no-nonsense defender. He does his job. And he’s always available, which is really important, and he just gets on with it. I think he’ll be a favourite at Goodison because, if I’m honest with you, he just concentrates on defending.”
Everton’s defensive struggles were evident last season as they conceded 66 league goals – the most they have ever shipped in a Premier League campaign. Not since 1975/76 under the late Billy Bingham have they conceded that many in a season.
Yerry Mina is arguably the club’s best defender but he struggled with injury throughout, making just 13 Premier League appearances. Ben Godfrey also had a stop-start campaign with injuries and despite crucial late-season performances, Mason Holgate and Michael Keane haven’t always convinced.
And for Campbell, a signing like Tarkowski is exactly what the club require as Frank Lampard looks to rebuild and rejuvenate the Blues’ squad. He said: “He’ll [Tarkowski] defend, and he’ll defend properly, which is what Everton need. Everton need to fix that defence and fix the midfield. If they fix that then they’ll be fine, and Tarkowski’s signing goes a long way to fixing a real problem area.”