Premier League: End of Everton era as Cahill exit nears

Tim Cahill has scored 68 goals in an Everton shirt
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Tim Cahill has proven one of the most inspired signings in Premier League history at Everton, but is off to the MLS...

"His departure will be the cause of much sadness, but it promises to be beneficial to the Toffees’ prospects in 2012/13."

No player defined David Moyes' first decade in charge of Everton more than Tim Cahill, one of the most prolific players in Merseyside derby history and, at his peak, the man widely revered as the best beyond the Champions League regulars.

His influence hasn't been felt quite as keenly over the last 18 months though, as he contributed only two Premier League goals. He was a substitute in three of the club's final five games last season as the arrival of Darron Gibson and loan return of Steven Pienaar increased Everton's midfield options.

A seemingly mutual decision therefore appears to have been reached that, rather than let Cahill's legend diminish by ending his remarkable eight-year stint at Goodison Park as a reserve, the 32-year-old will be allowed to pursue a move to MLS franchise the New York Red Bulls.

Everton have confirmed agreeing a fee for the transfer, leaving it to the much-admired Australian, who cost just £1.5 million when signed from Millwall in 2004, to discuss personal terms and pass a medical.

His departure will be the cause of much sadness on Merseyside, not to mention of source of relief to Liverpool fans long exacerbated by his tendency to torment them, but it promises to be beneficial to the Toffees' prospects in 2012/13.

The sum secured through his sale, expected to fall somewhere in the region of £1 million, and the £2 million that they are anticipated to earn by selling Joseph Yobo to Fenerbahce, where he has spent the last two years on loan, should fund the £5 million permanent purchase of Pienaar.

And if their exits are enough to finance the return of the game-changing South African then it might have the knock-on effect of freeing them to resist Manchester United's interest in England-capped left back Leighton Baines for a year at least.

Everton are [1.34] to finish in the top half in the upcoming campaign and are [5.1] to break back into the top six.

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