Liverpool vs Everton transfer battle looming over French powerhouse

According to The Mirror, Everton, Liverpool and West Ham United are all keen on Lille’s £6m-rated midfielder Soualiho Meite, who is currently on loan at Zulte Waregem.

Meite, 22, came up through the ranks with Auxerre, following in the footsteps of players like Philippe Mexes, Bacary Sagna, Younes Kaboul, Abou Diaby and Djibril Cisse in cutting their teeth with the French side.

The defensive midfielder earned a move to Lille in 2013, but has spent 2016 out on loan at Belgian side Zulte Waregem as he looks to develop by playing regular first-team football.

A French youth international with more than 30 caps across various ages, Meite looks to have a bright future – and his performances in Belgium appear to have triggered major Premier League interest.

The Mirror report that Everton, Liverpool and West Ham United are all looking to sign Meite, sparking a battle for his signature as Borussia Dortmund and Schalke also keep tabs on him.

Liverpool have a number of attacking midfield players, but adding Meite – a powerful, athletic defensive midfielder – to options like Jordan Henderson, Emre Can and Lucas Leiva could be a smart move.

Meanwhile, Everton have seen Meite’s former Lille team-mate Idrissa Gueye star so far this season, but with Gareth Barry now 35, manager Ronald Koeman may look to sign Meite as a long-term successor.

Finally, West Ham’s midfield has struggled to offer protection in front of the back four this season, and whilst manager Slaven Bilic already has the likes of Mark Noble, Cheikhou Kouyate, Pedro Obiang and Havard Nordtveit at his disposal, Meite could be a shrewd addition at £6m.

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