Everton are set to secure the signing of left-back Andrew Robertson from Scottish side Dundee United.
United boss David Moyes has made no secret of the fact that he’s looking to go after Baines as a replacement for Patrice Evra at Old Trafford and if Everton boss Roberto Martinez has a talented defender to work with, the deal could be more likely.
Martinez has shown a great recent history of working with younger and underrated players, raising them to a level where they are able to compete against and with some of the best players at their level.
Reports indicate that Everton will loan Robertson back to Dundee United for the rest of the season, so before United fans get too excited, a deal for Baines this month is unlikely to happen.
However, if Robertson settles in well at Goodison Park then the situation sets itself up nicely for Moyes to make a move for Baines following the World Cup.
Martinez has attended matches personally to watch Robertson as he’s been a stand out performer for Dundee United so far this season; he’s started 21 matches in the SPL and has scored three goals in the process.
He appears to tick every box in terms of what Martinez would be looking for in a player who could replace Baines; he’s aggressive, he’s ambitious, he’s fit and he has plenty of years ahead of him as he matures and gets better.
United have the option to extend Evra’s current deal by an extra year which they are unlikely to do if they secure Baines on a big contract which would cover the majority of the rest of his career.
Everton may also prefer a deal in the summer because any fee generated from the sale of Baines would partially be available for Martinez to reinvest in the squad across several key areas.
Watch this space.
Do you think Robertson is the natural replacement for Baines?
image: © Paolo Camera