Manchester United are hoping that Leighton Baines will push for an Everton exit in a bid to show the Premier League champions that he wants to move to Old Trafford.
Toffees manager Roberto Martinez has insisted that United have made a “final offer” for Baines, having bid £12m to try and lure the England left-back to follow former manager David Moyes to the Theatre of Dreams.
But the Daily Mail is reporting that United want Baines, who set-up England debutant Rickie Lambert for last night’s winning goal over Scotland – to hand in a written transfer request to prove he want to leave Everton for United.
The same newspaper is also suggesting that Moyes will monitor Cesc Fabregas over the next two weeks as he contemplates one last effort to try and sign the Barcelona midfielder, should he change his desire to stay at the Nou Camp.
Should the situation remain the same, Moyes could raid his former club for Marouane Fellaini, although the contract clause that would allow him to leave for £23m that was rumoured to have expired on July 31 may actually have only passed in the last 24 hours.
“Marouane had a buy-out clause where it was very straightforward,” admitted Martinez. “If someone met that valuation, the club had no say.
“That finished on July 31 so you can imagine during that period everyone was a bit expectant about what would happen. Once that date went, you just focus on working for the next season.
“I’m not concerned at all at the moment. The window is open and until it closes you’re going to get speculation, you’re going to get a lot of talk, not just at Everton. It’s the norm.”
It is believed though that Martinez is keen on bringing in a new left-back regardless of whether Baines stays of goes, and the club had Scouts attend the Belgium v France clash in Brussels yesterday night.