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Everton set their sights on Estonian international defender

| 10.06.2015

Everton are set to step up their pursuit of Augsburg defender Ragnar Klavan in the coming days according to the German press, with Roberto Martinez looking to shore up numbers in his back-line.

The defender would become the Toffees first Estonia representative, and only the second player from the nation to play in the Premier League.

A tough tackling, strong central back, who is also a potent attacking threat, Klavan fits into a similar mould to current Goodison stopper Phil Jagielka.

The 99-capped man scored twice in 34 appearances for his Bundesliga employers in the last campaign and has been a mainstay in the Fuggerstadter starting XI for the past three seasons.

One potential stumbling block Everton may have as they look to bag their man is that Augsburg surprised most people last season by qualifying for the Europa League.

According to reports Klavan has expressed a desire to play in the Premier League, though it now appears he will have to decide whether that is more important than chancing his arm in European football, for one season at least.

A slow start and an inconsistent end to the season saw Martinez’s men fall foul of a busy schedule and failed to threaten qualifying for a second straight season in continental football, but with no distractions this time round, will be looking for another bold bid to qualify.

The signing of Klavan would be the first step in order to cope with the demands of any qualification, and with a fee of around £2.5m mooted, he would be relatively cheap.

Two years after finishing fifth in the table, Ladbrokes offer 14/1 that the Toffees go one better than that and make the top four.

They finished closer to the relegation places than those illustrious spots in the season just gone, though at 80/1 it appears the bookies believe any struggle in 2015-16 is highly unlikely.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.