Thursday 30 May 2019 20:48, UK
Everton first-team coach Duncan Ferguson believes Dominic Calvert-Lewin has "locked himself" into the centre-forward position at Goodison Park and has backed the 22-year-old to "kick on" next year.
Calvert-Lewin played 35 times in the Premier League for the Goodison Park club this season, scoring six times; the England U21 international also has seven goals in 15 appearances for England U21s.
Everton have struggled to find a prolific goalscoring centre-forward to play on a consistent basis since Romelu Lukaku, who left to join Manchester United in 2017.
Calvert-Lewin's fellow striker Cenk Tosun has managed just four goals, with Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson both contributing the majority with 14 each from midfield this campaign.
Ferguson is supporting a group of Everton fans who are cycling 240 miles on June 1 & 2 from St. James' Park in Newcastle to Goodison Park; they are honouring the memory of ex-Blues midfielder Gary Speed.
Money being raised will go towards Everton in the Community's mental health campaign, The People's Place.
The Scotsman, who scored 72 times for the club, maintains that Calvert-Lewin is the long-term answer to Marco Silva's selection dilemmas up front.
"Dominic has done very well and has managed to lock himself into that centre forward position as a regular starter," Ferguson said.
"I think he's got a bit of everything, he ticks all the boxes for me.
"He can run in behind, he can cover the physicality side of it, he can come short, he's great in the air, his touch is improving.
"His stats to goals ratio is very very good, we think we can improve and we're looking forward to Dominic kicking on next year."
Sky Sports News understands that Everton are very interested in signing Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic this summer, who could provide a further attacking option.
Silva, who guided Everton to an eighth-placed finish last year, has previously said that his club need to "attack the market" during this summer's transfer window.