TIDYING UP ALL THE LOOSE STORIES IN FOOTBALL THIS WEEK
By David Lynch
EVERTON FEARFUL OVER MOYES
Everton officials are growing increasingly concerned about the future of manager David Moyes as the Scot continues to stall on a new contract, The Sweeper has learned.
Moyes, who celebrated a decade at the Everton helm last March, has less than six months to run on his current contract and in November revealed he was unwilling to enter into negotiations until the end of the January transfer window.
Publically the club are bullish about their chances of tempting their manager to re-sign, but behind the scenes there is a fear that the lack of funds being made available to Moyes for transfers is a source of increasing frustration.
And key to retaining Moyes's services will be keeping hold of stars Leighton Baines and Marouane Fellaini - the departure of either of whom this month could trigger the 49-year-old into ending his association with the club after 11 highly successful years.
Despite their limited transfer budget, Everton are again mounting a genuine challenge for Champions League qualification with the club currently fifth after 22 games.
But as Goal.com revealed earlier this month, Chelsea are preparing to activate the £25 million-plus release clause in the Belgian’s contract, while Baines has long been coveted by the likes of Manchester United.
Everton remain desperate to tie Moyes to a new long-term deal and hope that a proposed £4 million-a-year contract would persuade him to stay.
Moyes would not be short of suitors both at home and abroad were he to cut his Goodison Park ties, with German side Schalke understood to have targeted the Scot as a potential replacement for the recently departed Huub Stevens.