Everton forward Sandro Ramirez's proposed move to high-flying Valencia in January has been put on hold, with the Spaniard keen to determine his role under new manager Sam Allardyce before making a final decision over his future.
Sandro's arrival on Merseyside was met with much fanfare in the summer. Everton managed to beat a host of clubs to the signing of the former Barcelona graduate from Malaga for around £5.2m ($6.9, €6m), but the Spain youth international has not exactly hit the ground running at Goodison Park and has found himself omitted from the match-day squad on more than one occasion.
Former Everton manager Ronald Koeman and interim boss David Unsworth both decided to exclude Sandro from their squads, and he was not afforded a place on the substitutes' bench by Allardyce on the weekend as the Toffees strode to a comfortable 2-0 victory over Huddersfield Town.
His failure to adapt to the rigours of the Premier League combined with his lack of game-time led Sandro to consider his future. Valencia, who have emerged as unlikely title contenders under Marcelino this season, have been credited with an interest in taking the 22-year-old back to his homeland on loan in January.
Marcelino is keen to sign a new striker and two midfielders next month in order to help sustain his side's push for the title, according to AS, but a move for Sandro has hit a stumbling block in recent days with the forward looking for clarity on the plans Allardyce has for him before coming to a decision on his future.
Allardyce signed an 18-month deal with Everton last week and could well be replaced by a perhaps more glamorous manager at the end of the season - The Goodison hierarchy did sound out Marco Silva and Paulo Fonseca as they searched for a Koeman's successor - meaning any role he has in mind for Sandro could be cast aside in a matter of months.
The former West Ham United and Bolton Wanderers boss confirmed that signing a new striker was his prority ahead of the January transfer window, with Sandro, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Wayne Rooney and Oumar Niasse currently his attacking options at present.
Everton will likely have to defend more than they attack when they pitch up at Anfield to face Liverpool on Sunday (10 December), and Sandro will almost certainly miss the first Merseyside derby of the season after sustaining a knock during training earlier this week.