Everton have reportedly emerged as a potential destination for Burnley defender James Tarkowski, despite interest from Aston Villa.

A recent report from Daily Telegraph has delivered an update on the future of James Tarkowski. The English centre-back is a man in demand following Burnley’s relegation from the Premier League. His contract at Turf Moof was going to expire at the end of the season in any case, making him available as a free agent.

Aston Villa have been linked with a move for Tarkowski in recent weeks. But it appears Everton have emerged as a potential suitor, with the Toffees even submitting a contract offer worth £90,000 per week. They have further outlined the club’s ambition under Frank Lampard, and the Toffees could emerge as the front-runner in the race to sign the free agent.

After narrowly avoiding relegation, Everton are gearing up for a busy summer ahead as the club look to undergo a major squad overhaul. It could start with the sale of star player Richarlison, who is courted by several top clubs including Manchester United, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

As part of his rebuild, Lampard wants to bring in a few quality defenders, in order to add more competition to the first team. James Tarkowski fits the bill well for Everton, as he offers vast experience in English football, having featured in a total of 219 competitive outings during his time at Burnley.

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Tarkowski has established himself as a fine centre-back, impressing the onlookers with his dogged defensive qualities coupled with his imposing physique. The 29-year-old is a leader among men as well, which could come in handy for a club like Everton that lack characters at the back.

Everton’s quest to sign Tarkowski, though, will not be made easier by Aston Villa. The club from Birmingham are fresh from the capture of Boubacar Kamara, and it appears coach Steven Gerrard is determined to add more quality to his setup, after finishing 14th in the league this term.

The addition of an experienced star like Tarkowski could go a long way in adding depth to the central defensive unit, offering competition for the likes of Tyrone Mings, Calum Chambers and Ezri Konsa, who has struggled this season.

But with Everton ready to commit to a lucrative contract for the Burnley defender, it will be interesting to see who comes out on top between Gerrard and Lampard, this time on the negotiation table.

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