Everton left-back Leighton Baines and midfielder Marouane Fellaini have been frequently speculated about this summer.
Premier League champions Manchester United had previously enquired about the pair, but their initial advances were rejected by the Merseyside outfit. Manchester United manager David Moyes, currently of Everton, has since failed to make an improved bid for either player.
Arsenal were another side linked with Fellaini. The Belgian international enjoyed a successful season with Everton from a personal point of view, and previously admitted he had dreams of playing in the Champions League.
However, Everton manager Roberto Martinez is keen to keep the squad he has at his disposal, and has no immediate plans to sell any of his top players.
‘I don’t think speculation is healthy, we are just trying to become as good as we can before the transfer window closes. If we get clubs talking about our players we take it as compliment, because the players have been impressing and doing really well. Everyone here is focused on fighting for spots in the starting line-up.
Manchester United are still expected to make another bid for Leighton Baines before the summer transfer window closes, as they are looking for a long-term replacement for veteran defender Patrice Evra.
Arsenal look unlikely of making another offer for Fellaini, as their current target is Liverpool striker Luis Suarez.
Everton have been scouting out potential left-back replacements for Baines, should he leave. Martinez has long-admired Granada defender Guilherme Siqueiros – who has even attracted the attentions of La Liga runners-up Real Madrid.
The £4M-rated player is said to be keen to join Everton, which puts the ball in the Toffees’ court. However, with Baines still currently an Everton player, they may hold off on making an official bid until his future is settled.
Baines has never publicly stated he wants out of Everton, but the 28-year old will know his chances for the national team are significantly bettered should he be playing for a side of Manchester United’s stature. And with the 2014 World Cup approaching, he just might consider his options. Fellaini is still awaiting bids for his services.