Everton deny Chelsea have made £20m bid for Jack Rodwell

 

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The Independent Football

Everton manager David Moyes has dismissed speculation linking Chelsea with a £20million bid for midfielder Jack Rodwell.

Reports have suggested the England Under-21 international, who made his debut for Fabio Capello's senior squad last month, is a priority target for Blues boss Andre Villas-Boas when the transfer window opens in January.

Moyes, however, insists there has been no contact from Stamford Bridge regarding the 20-year-old, who has played just 27 minutes of Premier League football since matches against Spain and Sweden.

"I have had no offers, no contact from Chelsea - there would not be any other words I could add to that," said the Scot.

"There is nothing from me. We've had no phone call."

Everton's difficult financial situation has been well documented with chairman Bill Kenwright still trying to find a buyer for the club.

They signed only two loan players in August having sold Mikel Arteta, Jermaine Beckford and Ayegbeni Yakubu for about £16million.

While that may make other clubs feel Everton are vulnerable to big-money offers for their best players Moyes has reiterated his stance that no-one would be sold on the cheap.

"We've always said if anyone wants to bid for the players we can't stop that happening but what we do do is sell expensively," he said.

"If we are sellers we are always expensive sellers."

Rodwell has been ruled out of tomorrow's home match against Swansea with a hamstring injury he aggravated in the warm-up against Norwich on Saturday which prevented him from being able to come off the bench.

Moyes also confirmed his interest in Cliftonville teenager Rory Donnelly, who has also been linked with neighbours Liverpool while Swansea have had a £100,000 bid accepted already.

"We are in there trying to see what the situation is," added Moyes.

"The chairman spoke with their chairman there so we are around that as well.

"I am hoping to be able to add to the squad if I can but we don't have bundles of cash so we'll try to do what we can and look to an alternative market to try to get players in."

Everton's record against the promoted teams this season is poor as they were beaten at Goodison Park by QPR in their first match of the campaign and only salvaged a draw against Norwich at the weekend nine minutes from time.

"We had Norwich just recently, we have already played QPR and have only taken a point from the two of them at home so we have to be very aware of Swansea," added Moyes.

"Swansea as a club have done great; Brendan Rodgers has come in and done remarkably well to get them promoted but Roberto (Martinez) was in for a while, Paulo Sousa was in for a bit and they have created an identity and style for the club.

"I don't think they are under-estimated by Premier League teams because they are probably the highest passing team outside the top one or two.

"And it is impressive for a team to be promoted and be so strong defensively (Swansea have had eight clean sheets) because you tend to find that is sometimes the failing."

PA

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