Everton boss Roberto Martinez has attempted to dash Manchester United’s January transfer plans, by refuting claims that any of his high-profile stars will be leaving Goodison Park next month.
The transfer window opens at midnight tonight and two of Everton’s best players, namely starlet Ross Barkley and high-flying full-back Leighton Baines, have been heavily linked with moves to Old Trafford.
David Moyes is said to be preparing a large overhaul of his squad in January and has highlighted the Toffees duo as two priority signings.
Martinez however has quickly moved to quell speculation that his side could lose their star performers. This is in spite of rumours suggesting Moyes would be prepared to pay £50million for Barkley and anywhere between £16m and £26m for Baines.
The Spaniard, who has guided Everton to an impressive 4th place so far this season, was adamant that his club wouldn’t be bullied into a sale.
When asked if he was confident they could fend off the likes of United, he replied: “Yes. Absolutely. There is not even a doubt.
“I have said it many times that in football you can’t fight the trend of the game but what you can dictate is the timing and everything you do should be for the good of the club.
“We have done it (resist bids) before. Everything that happens needs to be to improve the squad, to give it a longer-term in relation to the strategy of the youth of the players and the blend you have with experience.
“That is based on football decisions and I can guarantee that will be the case in January 100 per cent.”
Neither Barkley or Baines have ever suggested that they want to leave Everton, but their loyalty to the club will no doubt be tested if Moyes does lodge a formal offer.