Everton have received two offers for Sheffield United target Mason Holgate, according to Football Insider.
Both have been rejected, with Bournemouth and Newcastle United also believed to be interested in Holgate.
Toffees manager, Carlo Ancelotti, does not want to lose the defender as he has become a vital part of his team in recent weeks.
Beginning the season on the bench, Holgate has now started the last 18 matches in all competitions. The 23-year-old is yet to miss a single minute of action on the pitch since Ancelotti was named boss on December 21.
Holgate has formed a partnership with Yerry Mina at the back and has helped Everton to three clean sheets during that time.
His performances have caught the eye of England manager Gareth Southgate. Southgate has monitored the centre-back during his last three Premier League games.
Why the Everton ace would be perfect for the Blades
Heading into the January transfer window, Chris Wilder made signing overlapping central defenders a priority. He already had cover for John Egan in the middle of the three-man back line in Phil Jagielka. Now he wanted competition for Chris Basham and Jack O’Connell.
Jack Robinson has since been signed as a left-sided backup option for O’Connell. Jack Rodwell also arrived as a free agent and played in Basham’s right-sided position in the 2-1 FA Cup victory over AFC Fylde.
Yet Rodwell is generally considered a midfielder, whereas Holgate would fit perfectly into that role. His experience at right-back means he is already used to making runs forward to support the attack. It also suggests Holgate could even fill in for George Baldock at wing-back if required.
If there is a slight weak spot in Wilder’s excellent defence it’s Basham. Now aged 31 he has been a superb player for the Blades since joining back in 2014. Basham was instrumental in their two promotions since.
But whereas Egan and O’Connell look very much at home in the Premier League, mistakes have started to creep into his game. Signing a young and developing alternative like Holgate makes a lot of sense.
Unfortunately, he also seems to be a big part of Ancelotti’s plans. This makes a departure from Goodison Park increasingly unlikely.
Holgate enters the final year of his current contract this summer. If he is yet to put pen to paper on a new deal by then, that could be the time to make a genuine move.