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Everton Defender Holgate Set for Loan: Leeds & Southampton Keen

Everton’s Holgate Catching Attention of Leeds United and Southampton

Everton’s Mason Holgate, a centre-back of significant calibre, has been making the headlines recently. Football insiders have flagged the interest of not just one, but three prominent football clubs—Leeds United, Sheffield United and Southampton—in securing a loan deal for this reputed defender.

The Case of Everton and Holgate

The Merseyside outfit, Everton, has consented to the departure of Holgate for the next season on a loan basis. This decision is not surprising as the club’s leadership had made their intentions clear on June 26th, when Sean Dyche, Everton’s manager, announced the defender’s availability for a season-long loan.

A Staple of the Merseyside Team

Holgate, 26, has been a long-standing figure at Everton, boasting two more years on his current contract. The star defender had carved out his place as the player of the year under the former managerial reign of Carlo Ancelotti. However, his influence on the pitch has been notably less impactful under the new leadership.

A Stumbling Block: Holgate’s Contractual Terms

What could potentially hinder the loan deal is the automatic wage hike that Holgate’s contract stipulates. His weekly earnings of £72,000-a-week, which came into effect this summer, is part of the five-year contract he penned in March 2020 under the watchful eye of then sporting director, Marcel Brands.

Holgate’s Season in Review

The previous season saw Holgate restricted to only nine appearances for Everton, a campaign that had the club teetering on the brink of relegation until the dramatic final day. This has done little to dampen the defender’s appeal, however, with his history of nearly 150 appearances for the club since joining from Barnsley in 2015, with five goals and five assists under his belt.

The Market for Defensive Assets: Leeds United, Sheffield United and Southampton

Relegated clubs Leeds United and Southampton, along with the newly promoted Sheffield United, are all searching for defensive augmentations this summer. Sheffield United, fresh from a second-place finish in the Championship, are keen to make a stronger impression in the top flight after a two-year absence. Leeds, on the other hand, are feeling the effects of player losses following their Premier League relegation, thus making a case for reinforcements.

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