According to the Mirror, the Toffees are willing to pay the exorbitant sum as a 'peace offering' to Watford, due to last year's allegations of trying to nick then-manager Marco Silva - a complaint that hasn't yet been resolved.
Despite the alleged offer of a £15m compensation package, Watford refused to hand over the manager and accused Everton of making an illegal approach to the Portuguese. The Hornets sacked Silva two months later after a terrible run that included only one win in 10 games - accrediting the team's poor form to Silva being distracted by the offer he was made.
At the end of May Silva took over the team at Goodison Park and it seems that in his quest to sign Watford's star the club wants to kill two birds with one stone.
While we wait for clarification on the Richarlison fee, don't be surprised if the Watford complaint for compensation over Silva disappears. Everton get their player and avoid protracted arbitration. Watford get an aesthetically-pleasing fee when it's really a fee for both. #EFC— Rob Vera (@TheRobVera) July 20, 2018
It's believed that the inflated sum is meant to alleviate the tension between the two clubs, giving Watford a very favourable return on their investment and Silva his winger of choice.
There seems to be no other explanation for such a huge investment on a player whose best form was before Christmas, but the Toffee's manager seems confident that he could make the difference for Everton this season.
If everything goes according to plan, Everton hopes to appease the fans and get the train rolling with some more new faces finally coming in. Barcelona has reportedly accepted the £22m offer for Lucas Digne and the club is waiting for the left-back's approval before moving forward.