Sandro Ramirez

Sandro Ramirez

Everton sign striker Sandro Ramirez from Malaga

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Everton’s busy summer continues with Ronald Koeman making his fourth signing of the transfer window.

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Sandro Ramirez, 21, has arrived at Goodison Park from Malaga with the former Barcelona striker arriving for just $6.7 million after the Toffees triggered the release clause in his contract.

He has signed a four-year deal at Everton as the Barca product scored 16 goals for Malaga in La Liga last season after leaving the Nou Camp for regular action.

Speaking to Everton’s website Sandro was full of enthusiasm for the big challenge ahead as he believes the Toffees can challenge for a UEFA Champions League spot.

“I’m very happy, this is a big step in my career,” Sandro said. “I know I’m signing for a massive club in England. Everton is the ideal place for me, I’ve got the ideal manager who is going to keep giving me the confidence to improve my game. I cannot wait to wear the blue shirt in front of the Everton fans at Goodison Park.

“It’s a big jump in my career coming to the Premier League and for a club like Everton which is really on the up. They have got big plans and want to succeed and keep developing. I’m hoping I can get to know my teammates as soon as possible, and want to adapt to the football and the way of life in the city. Everton have made some big signings and we’re hoping we can put in a great season and hopefully then we can achieve that aim of getting in the Champions League. It will be a big season for us.”

Sandro’s arrival comes after Jordan Pickford, Davy Klaasen and Henry Onyekuru (he will spend next season on loan at Anderlecht), with the total spend now over $90 million.

With Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley expected to leave this summer, Koeman is certainly doing his business early as he looks to rebuild the spine of his team which finished seventh in the PL last season and have UEFA Europa League action to look forward to.

Pickford will start in goal, Klaassen will be the main creator in midfield and Sandro could well be their main forward if Lukaku leaves. Onyekuru is one for the future with the Nigerian youngster the top scorer in Belgium’s top-flight last season, and all of a sudden Everton’s promise to invest heavily in their playing squad has come true.

Owner Farhad Moshiri promised extra funds when he arrived and with a new stadium proposal in the works, Koeman bringing an exciting brand of play to Goodison and youngsters involved with plenty of new signings, Everton is a club on the up.

A top four finish still seems a little way off, especially with the Europa League to contend with in 2017-18, but Koeman’s boys are well-equipped for a battle in all four competitions this season.

Big bargain? Everton tabbed as favorite for ex-Barca prospect Sandro

Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images
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Whether Sandro Ramirez has come of age or just tapping his potential, the ex-Barcelona star may reap even more rewards for Malaga.

Sandro turns 22 next month and scored seven goals in 32 appearances for Barca between 2014-16. Remarkably, he was a free transfer to Malaga after the Blaugranas released him.

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The move has been a smashing success, with Sandro bagging a goal about every other game and not just against the minnows of La Liga. Sandro twice beat Sevilla’s back line, also scoring against Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

Even more surprising is Sky Sports’ report that Sandro would only cost Everton around $6.5 million. That’s nuts, and could be one of the best bargains in ages. We wouldn’t be surprised if, should that number be real, other suitors knock on Malaga’s door.

Sandro is a striker, but would ease the burden if Ross Barkley departs Goodison Park.

Chelsea 2-2 Barcelona: Good-looking goals to spare in Maryland (video)

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Luis Suarez and Sandro Ramirez scored second half goals for Barcelona, but Gary Cahill’s late header combined with a brilliant opening goal from Eden Hazard to force penalty kicks between Chelsea and Barca in International Champions Cup action on Tuesday at FedEx Field in Landover.

In the shootout, Thibaut Courtois stopped Gerard Pique and watched Alen Halilovic’s panenka go off the crossbar, while Victor Moses, Radamel Falcao, Ramires and Loic Remy scored to lift the Blues to a 4-2 win.

Close to 80,000 saw Barcelona move to 1-2 in three ICC matches. Barca finishes off its tourney vs. Fiorentina in Florence on Aug. 2.

For Chelsea, the Premier League champions also have a shootout win over Paris Saint-Germain and a loss to New York Red Bulls. They’ll look for a regulation win when they host Fiorentina on Aug. 5 at Stamford Bridge.

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Kurt Zouma came very close to putting Chelsea ahead on an arrow of a free kick from Cesc Fabregas, but his bouncing header was pushed off the bar by a diving Marc-Andre ter Stegen. Moments later, on a free kick a bit closer and from the left, Cahill nodded a Fabregas offering over the bar.

Chelsea stayed on the front foot, and Oscar forced ter Stegen into another prone save before Hazard broke through in the 10th minute. The reigning PL player of the year busted through the middle of the 18 on a dribble and beat Rakitic before besting two more defenders and ter Stegen. 1-0 Chelsea.

Following a few more nervy moments, Barca started to build momentum. That’s when the Blues started to attack on the counter, and Diego Costa looked especially dangerous.

Costa was fouled again, leading to another dangerous free kick that Oscar put off the crossbar in the 26th minute. It was cleared out for a corner which came to nothing.

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Chelsea’s Eden Hazard celebrates with Kenedy. (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

Courtois played the foil in the 31st minute, as Luis Suarez’s first-touch shot was parried by the Chelsea keeper, who then made a strong stop on Sandro moments later.

A clear breakaway for Costa saw the Spanish forward miss a shot wide of the far post from 10 yards away.

Suarez was a threat for Barcelona in the absence of Neymar, Messi and Javier Mascherano, and started a chance that could’ve ended with an Ivan Rakitic goal in the 39th minute.

Rakitic, however, mishit the ball well wide of the goal. Barcelona found its equalizer through Suarez in the 52nd minute. Cesar Azpilicueta butchered a headed clearance, putting it on a platter for Suarez. The Uruguayan froze Courtois and chipped him. Zouma tried to clear it off the line to no avail.

Sandro Ramirez boosted Barca to its first lead of the contest. After a host of subs left both teams adapting to the match, Sandro moved into the 18 from the right before launching a curling ball over John Terry and around a diving Courtois. 2-1, 66′.

But Cahill bloodied his nose and evened the score when he rose above the hands of Jordi Masip to head home. He subbed off for oft-loaned Nathaniel Chalobah right after scoring the equalizer.