Man United Push for Everton Defender Transfer EPL

Jarrad Branthwaite of Everton
Jarrad Branthwaite of Everton celebrates scoring his team's second goal during the Premier League match between Everton FC and Tottenham Hotspur at Goodison Park on February 03, 2024 in Liverpool, England. 

Everton’s intention to retain Jarrad Branthwaite is being tested as Manchester United seek to secure the defender before the month’s end, suggest reports from The Echo. This pursuit has intensified following Branthwaite’s omission from England’s European Championship squad, a move that presents a unique opportunity for negotiations.

Branthwaite’s Absence and Transfer Implications

The Football Association’s restrictions on transfer talks during international duty would have complicated matters if Branthwaite had been selected for the Euros. Fortunately for United, his exclusion, partly due to a slight groin issue, opens the door for discussions. Gareth Southgate’s decision not to include the 21-year-old, despite his international debut against Bosnia and Herzegovina, has catalysed United’s push for a deal.

Everton, however, remain firm in their stance. They refute claims of a Goodison Park ‘fire sale,’ asserting that Branthwaite’s value is comparable to high-profile defenders such as Harry Maguire, Wesley Fofana, and Josko Gvardiol. The Blues are determined not to let Branthwaite go cheaply, a sentiment echoed by Goodison Park insiders.

Valuation and Transfer Market Dynamics

Old Trafford executives are optimistic about concluding a deal before June 30, yet Everton are preparing to retain Branthwaite unless a substantial offer materialises. The Manchester Evening News reports that United “won’t be held to ransom” over Branthwaite’s price, considering their delicate financial position regarding PSR (Profit and Sustainability Rules). United also have alternative defensive targets, including Juventus’ Gleison Bremer and Bayer Leverkusen’s Edmond Tapsoba, providing them leverage in negotiations.

Everton insiders have made it clear that any departure from Sean Dyche’s squad will depend on meeting the club’s valuation and the player’s willingness to leave. Branthwaite, contracted until 2027, commands a premium due to his English nationality and left-footedness, adding to his market appeal.

Financial Pressures and Strategic Decisions

Like several Premier League clubs, Everton faces financial pressures that could necessitate the sale of high-value players. This strategy aims to avoid breaching PSR regulations again, following two points deductions this season. The club’s current predicament underscores the importance of strategic sales to balance the books while maintaining squad strength.

Everton’s refusal to be pressured into a hasty sale highlights their understanding of Branthwaite’s potential and market value. As the transfer window progresses, the club must navigate the fine line between financial necessity and retaining their top talents to ensure a competitive edge next season.

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