Loaned out Everton striker Henry Onyekuru is unlikely to return to his parent club in January - as had been hoped by the Toffees hierarchy - due to a clause in his contract with Anderlecht.
Everton have been suffering striker problems since Romelu Lukaku's departure for Manchester United in the summer and have so far failed to make up for the departed Belgian, who netted 25 Premier League goals last season.
New signings Wayne Rooney, Sandro Ramirez and Nikola Vlasic have a collective total of five goals in all competitions this season, while makeshift forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin is yet to find the net in 10 outings.
While hopes had been pinned on recalling summer signing Henry Onyekuru from his loan stint at Anderlecht early, the player's representative has all but ruled out the possibility of a return - with no recall clause being included in the deal:
“It’s unfortunate that he can’t join Everton till the summer, as there is no break clause in his loan deal and aside that he is not qualify for a work permit yet," the unnamed intermediary told Own Goal Nigeria.
“The plan for now is still the same like in the summer, which is spend a season on loan before returning back to Everton next summer to fight for a shirt in the team.”
The news, if true, will leave Everton frustrated, as Onyekuru continues to shine in Belgium. After a remarkable breakthrough campaign with FC Eupen last season, the youngster has continued his fine form into the new season, scoring six goals in nine games for Champions League side Anderlecht.
As for Everton, their striker dilemma persists, and may be forced to scour the transfer window in January for a solution.
Formerly outcast Oumar Niasse has filled some of the goal void left by Lukaku, with three goals in his last four outings for the Toffees. However, but the short term solution doesn't seem to be working, and Ronaldo Koeman is reportedly pursuing other options with Danny Ings among the January targets.