Everton are keen on meeting Felipe Caicedo's €10m (£7.3m, $10.8m) release clause to secure the Espanyol striker before the end of the transfer window, according to Mundo Deportivo. The Spanish publication claims the former Manchester City forward is happy in La Liga side but, having also been linked with Newcastle United in recent days, he looks "closer to leaving the club than staying" due to the economic power of the Premier League side.
Roberto Martinez has bolstered his squad during the current transfer window with two prospects for the future in the shape of Bury academy starlet Matty Foulds and Swiss Under-21 international Shani Tarashaj, with the latter being sent back on loan to Grasshopper Club Zurich for the remainder of the season. But the Spanish manager is also after a proven option in attack after letting Steven Naismith leave in an £8.5m move to Norwich City.
Caicedo failed to make the impact expected in the Premier League during his days at the Etihad Stadium as a youngster. However, as a 27-year-old he has developed into a key figure for Espanyol
Marca recently reported Everton were set to battle Newcastle for his signature after an impressive start to the campaign in La Liga, in which the player has scored eight goals in 23 appearances.
Mundo Deportivo now claims the Toffees are ready to take the next step in negotiations by matching his release clause – which was set at €10m in November when the former Manchester City striker signed a new deal with the Catalan side until 2019.
Caicedo recently rejected a big money move to China football and Espanyol are trying to convince the Ecuador international to the same with the Everton approach – as the club have been recently bought by a new Chinese millionaire company and do not need the money.
However, the Spanish media believes that, despite the 27-year-old being happy in La Liga, the Everton economic proposal is "too tempting" to say no to. Furthermore, Mundo Deportivo points out that Caicedo himself own half of his rights, with the other half belonging to Espanyol.