Everton are close to making Southampton defender Cuco Martina their first signing of the summer, according to the Football Faithful website.

The Curacao international reportedly flew to Liverpool on Wednesday for talks with the Toffees, who finished the Premier League season in seventh place, one position and 15 points clear of the Saints.

Everton boss Ronald Koeman is bidding to sign him for the second time after bringing the 27-year-old to the Premiership from FC Twente to Southampton in 2015.

Martina also played under the 54-year-old manager’s brother Erwin while at RKC Waalwijk and will be on his way out of St Mary’s when his contract expires at the end of June.

Koeman sees the Dutch-born defender, capped 25 times for Curacao, as an ideal addition to his squad as cover for right-back Seamus Coleman, who broke his leg playing for Ireland against Wales in March.

The long-serving full-back, who recently signed a five-year contract extension with the club, is in the early stages of a lengthy rehabilitation process following the double leg fracture he suffered while on international duty.

Martina made 24 Premier League appearances in two seasons with the Saints and played just 15 matches in all competitions this season.

He became the first Curacaoan to score in the Premier League when he opened the scoring for Southampton against Arsenal with a brilliant long-range curling effort at St Mary’s in 2015.

However, with Euro 2016 winner Cedric Soares now ahead of him in the starting line-up, his career at the south coast club has stagnated.

Everton would become his sixth professional club, having also played for RBC Roosendaal and Jong Twente.


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