Michael Ball has called for Everton for bolster their midfield by winning the race for Denis Zakaria.

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Rafa Benitez got his Toffees reign off to the perfect start by securing a 3-1 win over Southampton on the opening weekend of the Premier League season.

The ex-Liverpool and Newcastle United chief, who was appointed as Carlo Ancelotti's successor in June, has made three signings since taking charge.

Andros Townsend joined after his Crystal Palace contract expired, while Demarai Gray has returned to his homeland following a stint with Bayer Leverkusen.

Asmir Begovic will provide competition for Jordan Pickford, having moved from Bournemouth, but former Everton left-back Ball feels Benitez must strengthen his midfield options ahead of the transfer window closing at the end of the month.

According to German media outlet Bild, the Toffees are in the running to sign Borussia Monchengladbach defensive midfielder Zakaria, who would add a real presence to their midfield with his 6 ft 3 stature. The report suggests Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are also courting the £27m-rated Switzerland international.

The 24-year-old made 32 appearances for the Bundesliga side last term and Ball thinks he would be the perfect signing.

Speaking exclusively to Football FanCast, Ball said: "He's 24 and got good experience in the Bundesliga, which is a good league to learn and develop your abilities.

"If that's a deal Everton can get over the line, I'm all for it."