Tom Cleverley is set to be offered a new contract at Manchester United, according to recent speculation.
The Daily Mail reports that the £10 million-rated midfielder - often the subject of scathing criticism from Red Devils fans and several media pundits for a perceived lack of effectiveness - is to be offered a three-year deal including terms of approximately £70,000-per-week, with Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal eager to see him stay and Cleverley said to be keen to extend his current contract which is set to expire in 2015.
The same source suggests that rather than joining in with the almost universal condemnation and mockery of Cleverley's influence and abilities, Van Gaal has actually been suitably impressed by the 25-year-old's steely resolve and committed response to such harsh criticism.
Scarce midfield options
Manchester United are hardly blessed with a multitude of quality options in midfield, of course, with Van Gaal and executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward having seemingly struggled to tempt a number of the club's first-choice transfer targets to Old Trafford this summer.
The skilful and diminutive Ander Herrera should prove a long-term success in the Premier League following his £28 million move from La Liga outfit Athletic Club in June, yet Van Gaal does not currently appear to possess a suitable natural partner for the Spaniard.
Juventus star Arturo Vidal is clearly a player that Manchester United desire, although that particular transfer saga has been raging for a matter of months and a potential move appears no closer now than it did when Van Gaal first took the managerial reins.
Manchester United supporters will hardly be enthused by the decision to retain Cleverley, although it could be that the England international is sufficiently buoyed by that unwavering support from his new boss and uses it as the inspiration required to finally go on and prove himself at domestic level.
Cleverley missed the disappointing 2-1 defeat to Swansea on Saturday, but should be fit for selection very soon and could be in contention for next weekend's trip to Sunderland.
Everton hopes thwarted
If Cleverley does agree to sign a new deal, then that would appear to put a premature end to Everton's pursuit of his signature.
The Toffees - who opened their 2014/15 campaign with a 2-2 draw against Nigel Pearson's newly-promoted Leicester yesterday - were believed to be interested in bringing Cleverley to Goodison Park, with Manchester United's apparent admiration for Irish midfielder James McCarthy perhaps set to work in their favour.
However, it looks as if Roberto Martinez will have to look elsewhere for additional midfield recruits after securing the loan signing of Chelsea youngster Christian Atsu last week and Bosnian Muhamed Besic last month.