Everton have confirmed Joshua King and Robin Olsen will leave this summer as the club continues its search for Carlo Ancelotti’s replacement. King and Olsen are among five senior players who will depart when their contracts expire and save Everton more than £1m a month in wages. Theo Walcott, Yannick Bolasie and Muhamed Besic make up the quintet.
King made little impact after joining on a short-term deal from Bournemouth in January and the decision not to extend his stay is no surprise. The 29-year-old was restricted to 11 substitute appearances and failed to score in a spell affected by injury. The striker, who rejected interest from Fulham on deadline day and was wanted by West Ham last summer, will become a free agent on 1 July.
Olsen will return to his parent club, Roma, after the expiry of his loan. Ancelotti had wanted the experienced goalkeeper to sign permanently this summer but that plan has been shelved.
The departures of Walcott, Bolasie and Besic were also inevitable, with the former England winger already agreeing a two-year contract with Southampton, but represent a significant saving on the wage bill and the financial excesses that have plagued Everton in recent years.
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Walcott was given a three-and-a-half-year contract worth £110,000 a week when signed by Sam Allardyce for £20m from Arsenal in January 2018, a total outlay of £40m. Bolasie, who cost £25m from Crystal Palace in 2016, earned about £70,000 a week over his five-year contract. The winger, who sustained a serious knee injury midway through his first season at Everton, started 23 Premier League games for the club. Besic has not appeared at club level since his loan with Sheffield United ended last year.
Despite Nuno Espírito Santo and David Moyes being early frontrunners for the Everton manager’s job the club’s hierarchy, including the director of football, Marcel Brands, are assessing options as they come to terms with Ancelotti’s abrupt exit to Real Madrid. Everton will hold talks with the Portuguese coach, who is available following his departure from Wolves and has spoken to Crystal Palace, but are only at the start of their search.
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