Everton's XI could challenge for a top-four spot in the Premier League this season

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The return of the Premier League is so close we can almost taste it.

A little more than a week to go until the greatest league in the world returns.

Will Manchester City win their third consecutive title? Who will make the top-four? Can any side crack the top-six?

Last season, sixth-placed Manchester United lost 10 matches and yet finished nine points clear of seventh-placed Wolves.

Wolves secured a place in Europe via their league position and will be looking to challenge for a top-six finish this time around. So too will the likes of West Ham and Leicester.

But perhaps the best-placed side to break into the top-six and, maybe, challenge for a top-four spot is Everton.

Despite losing key man Idrissa Gueye to Paris Saint-Germain for £30 million recently, the Toffees have impressed in the transfer window.

Everton FC v Manchester United - Premier League

The signing of Fabian Delph for £8.5 million could prove to be one of the best acquisitions of the summer.

Joining him is Andre Gomes on a permanent deal from Barcelona for £22 million and back-up goalkeeper Jonas Lossl on a free transfer.

And Marco Silva’s side are set to shock everyone by securing a deal to sign 19-year-old Moise Kean from Juventus for an initial £29 million.

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With Ademola Lookman (£25m) and Nikola Classic (£14m) also leaving the Merseyside club, Everton have actually broken even so far this summer.

And they might even make further signings before the window closes next Thursday night if Silva gets his way.

But even if they don’t, Everton’s XI is looking pretty strong.

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They could cause plenty of problems this season.

Last week, Silva was asked if two weeks was enough for Everton to complete their transfer business after he claimed he wanted "four more signings" as he targets a centre-back, winger, striker and a new right-back.

“It should be if you really want to be competitive and to do better than last season," the former Watford boss said.

Wigan Athletic v Everton - Pre-Season Friendly

“Because at the end of the day, it is what we want to do: do better than last season.

“So it is clear we should put more quality and competition inside.”

And before Gueye completed his move to PSG, Silva insisted that Everton would need a direct replacement.

“If Gana goes then we have to replace him directly and one player has to come in with that profile and, I said to you, one clear No6 to come and to play," Silva added.

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