Everton expect to appoint a new manager by early next week as talks with Rafa Benitez, currently the number one candidate for the role, continue.

The ECHO understands that further discussions between the club's hierarchy and Benitez about becoming the Blues' fifth appointment in as many years are set to take place.

Nuno Espirito Santo felt he was in pole position last week, but it now appears the Blues are set to turn to Benitez instead to replace Carlo Ancelotti.

But as well as hunting for a new manager, Everton fans have also turned their thoughts to the upcoming transfer window.

How likely are Everton to sign some of the big names that have been mentioned in the rumour mill in the last few weeks?

SkyBet has the latest transfer odds - accurate at the time of writing - and it makes for interesting reading.

It's important, however, to take most of it with a pinch of salt. The players listed below are the names who Everton are apparently 'most likely' to sign this summer…

Conor Coady - 2/1

A recent rumour that has emerged following Nuno Espirito Santo being linked with the Everton manager’s job.

One report claimed the 28-year-old was discussed as a potential target when the Blues were speaking to Nuno earlier this month.

While reports from some have even suggested that Yerry Mina could leave Goodison Park to make way for the potential arrival of the defender.

However, it is hard to imagine, despite the incredibly short odds the bookies are currently offering, the Blues will make a move for the former Liverpool Academy graduate this summer.

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Max Aarons - 2/1

Everton hope to find the long-term successor to right-back Seamus Coleman this summer.

A new full-back is on the Blues' shopping list and scouts are actively looking at the options but the club currently see a 'limited' market for players who fit the criteria they are looking for.

Norwich City's Aarons was under consideration by Everton transfer chiefs, but the ECHO understands the Blues are now looking elsewhere.

The Canaries rejected a £20m bid for Aarons in January - understood to be from Roma - and are likely to want much more for the England under-21 international this summer.

And despite the bookies having the Blues down as 'second-favourites' for the full-back’s signature, the ECHO understands a move is unlikely.

Kalidou Koulibaly 5/1

The Napoli defender was first linked with a potential big-money move to Goodison when Ronald Koeman was manager.

The 30-year-old was then continually linked with the Blues during Carlo Ancelotti’s tenure after the two worked together at Napoli.

But with Ancelotti having left the Blues earlier this month to take over at Real Madrid, a move for Koulibaly appears even less likely than it did under the Italian.

Ivan Toney - 5/1

Last season was one to remember for Toney after he helped his Brentford side to promotion to the Premier League.

Signed last summer for £5million from Peterborough, that fee now looks an absolute snip after what's been a goal-laden campaign for the 25-year-old.

Toney hit 33 goals across the entire season - the last of which set the club on their way to a 2-0 win over Swansea in the Championship play-off final last month.

And although Everton are currently 'favourites' to land the forward this summer, it appears after his side’s promotion that he won’t be going anywhere.

"Ivan has done amazingly this season and if we hadn't have gone up then there would have been lots of Premier League interest in him,” Brentford's co-director of football Rasmus Ankerson told Sky Sports.

"Obviously now it's a different situation. We would have had to look at that, but that's not a new thing for Brentford.

"Season after season, player trading has been a big part of our business model.

"We have to buy cheap, sell expensive and then reinvest the money into improving the team. It's not going to be a very different Brentford that we see in the future.

"Ivan though, like he said after the game, can't wait to start scoring goals in the Premier League. I'm sure that will be for us."

Aaron Ramsey - 6/1

Ramsey has been at Juventus since moving from Arsenal back in 2019, and still has over two years remaining on his contract in Turin.

But under Andrea Pirlo last season, the 30-year-old struggled to secure regular game time. One of the reasons behind his lack of minutes has been injuries.

Since joining the Serie A side the Welshman has been out injured for more than 100 days.

The former Gunner has been linked with Everton via reports in Italy, as the Blues look to bolster his midfield options this summer.

But given his age and injury struggles over the last few years, it is hard to see the Welshman being top of the Blues’ shopping list this summer.

Allan Saint-Maximin - 9/1

Saint-Maximin's future at Newcastle United is likely to be the subject of continued speculation throughout the summer.

Everton are second in the betting behind Arsenal to land the 24-year-old’s signature in the upcoming transfer window.

The forward endured a frustrating second season at St James' Park, with a lengthy battle with Covid-19 and recurrent injury concerns restricting his appearances.

Saint-Maximin signed a six-year deal last October, but it is likely that should a high offer come in for him this summer, then Newcastle would sell.

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Wilfried Zaha 9/1

The Blues need more depth in attack, with a spate of injuries bringing their brilliant start to the season to a shuddering halt last season.

Zaha would be an eye-catching signing and certainly add an extra element to Ancelotti's attack.

He has been linked with a move to Goodison for some time, most notably towards the end of the 2019 summer transfer window.

Talk of a move away still lingers, though, and Everton are priced at 9/1 with the bookies to sign the Crystal Palace man.