Chief BBC Sport football writer Phil McNulty believes that greater scrutiny should be placed on Marcel Brands for his record in the transfer market with Everton.

Taking to Twitter, McNulty summarised his argument before linking to his full article.

“Instead of putting Everton’s new manager Rafa Benitez, who has spent just £1.7m, under scrutiny, focus should be on DoF Marcel Brands, who has presided over a ridiculously expensive, flawed transfer policy & Academy not producing enough first-team quality”, argued McNulty.

His full piece on the BBC’s live feed [22/9/21, 11:09] discussed the importance of the context of Benitez and his arrival at the club, in which he only enjoyed £1.7 million of spending on transfer fees.

That partially comes about as a result of Everton’s costly new stadium construction project, but also through Financial Fair Play constraints.

Andros Townsend, Asmir Begovic, Salomon Rondon and Andy Lonergan all arrived on free transfers with Demarai Gray joining for the nominal £1.7 million fee.

Ultimately, financial issues caused Benitez to be afforded little wiggle room in the market and could not usher in a full rebuild of the squad.

Further injuries to the likes of star players Jordan Pickford, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison have further compounded the problems at Goodison Park.

Read Everton Verdict

Fans will be desperate to see that significant cracks do not show despite the modesty of Everton’s summer outlay.

However, given Brands’ critical role in recruitment at the club, more does have to be asked as to whether expensive flops deserve more scrutiny.

James Rodriguez was recently sold with under thirty outings for the club whilst Moise Kean has also been shipped back out having failed to hit even ten goals during Brands’ tenure.

Equally, Anthony Gordon is the only recent academy graduate to break into first-team plans and make over 20 appearances in the last two seasons – meaning the integration of youth is something that has far from excelled.

Brands alone may be the scapegoat, though McNulty has some justification in raising questions as to his effectiveness in recent years.