Manchester United would deal a 'hammer blow' to Everton if they were to capture the defender before the close of the transfer window, according to former Blue, Peter Beardsley.
The Premier League champions have twice attempted to sign the England international this summer but have, so far, proved fruitless in their attempts to prise him away from Goodison Park,
Manchester United's latest bid, made this week, valued Baines at £12 million in a combined offer for himself and Everton teammate Marouane Fellaini as David Moyes strives to make reinforcements.
Everton, however, rejected the bid as 'derisory and insulting' and it remains unclear if Manchester United will return with an improved offer before the transfer deadline on September 2.
Although Baines has not be agitating for a transfer to Manchester United, Beardsley remains concerned that the 28-year-old could yet join the Red Devils in the coming weeks.
And, should the left-back join his former manager in Manchester, Beardsley fears it could prove potentially catastrophic for the Toffees.
“I hope they can keep both of them, but I really hope they can keep hold of Baines," Beardsley told talkSPORT.
“No disrespect to Fellaini, who’s a great player, but he’s a bit more replaceable than Baines. Everton have got a few midfielders and I think they’ve got an interest in James McCarthy at Wigan if Fellaini goes.
“But I think losing Baines would be a hammer blow. Manchester United have got the pulling power so it could go either way.”