New Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti is reportedly eyeing up a move for Sheffield United defender John Egan in January.
The 27-year-old centre back has been one of the Blades’ stand-out players in their superb start to Premier League life, and Everton see him as a perfect addition to their squad.
The Toffees are thought to be targeting defenders in the transfer window as they look to shore up their leaky back-line, and believe they could tempt Egan away from Bramall Lane.
Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder, however, is confident they can resist any big-money offers for their players.
Wilder knows they cannot match the wages on offer at most of their Premier League rivals but the Blades boss claims the club are in a much stronger position than 18 months ago when they lost David Brooks to Bournemouth.
“I’d think that 75 per cent of clubs in this division, and possibly more, in financial terms, could offer better deals,” said Wilder.
“But I’d like to think the players would look a little bit deeper than that.
“We had a situation with David when we were in our second season in the Championship and a Premier League club came calling.
“Sometimes it’s difficult when that happens, but we’re now in a stronger position.
“We want to keep our best players. We want to continue building and I’m grateful to the board for their support in that.”
Wilder insists he is not worried about his players being wanted and Egan is one of a number of players who have been offered new deals to tie them to Bramall Lane.
“That’s part and parcel of the game,” he said. “We always talk about being worried if they weren’t being looked at and being bottom of the division.
“That’s something we have to handle and deal with.
“They are all under contract. We’re keen to reward them. I’ve had support from the board, in terms of negotiating contracts, which is great.”