They have looked at Ghana captain Ayew and Spanish midfielder Isco but have concerns if either has the physicality need to play in the Premier League. Ayew may instead join Nottingham Forest.
Everton thought they had clinched a loan deal for Arnaut Danjuma but were waiting for Villarreal to release some papers.
The winger then heard of Tottenham’s interest while on his way to Liverpool and got off a train at Crewe as he aborted his journey.
Everton were also interested in a host of other forwards. They agreed a fee for Kamaldeen Sulemana but he preferred to join Southampton while they offered Udinese £20 million for Beto but did not believe he was worth his £35 million release clause.
Sean Dyche has backed the board for their efforts on transfer deadline day, despite not getting any new faces in for him.
The new manager also noted that players without a club were sometimes “there for a reason” and backed his current squad to improve performances.
“I think we have some very talented players here and I have never been one for signing players for the sake of signing them,” he said. “I am not going to sign players for the sake of signing them and never see them again. They have to be good enough to affect it.”