The revelation yesterday evening that Everton have rejected a bid from Manchester United for Leighton Baines, thought to be around 12million, extinguishes any idea that David Moyes would refrain from raiding his old club of its star players. Probably the best left back in the league last year, Baines would be an ideal replacement for Patrice Evra, being 4 years younger than the 32 year old Evra, and would also show a statement of intent by Moyes that he is not afraid to make changes to the team that won the league so convincingly last season.
Baines played in every minute of the 38 league games last season, the only outfield player to do so, scoring 5 goals for his club, and the Telegraph lists him as having created 5 assists and a remarkable 108 chances, and was subsequently named in the PFA team of the year. Breathing down Ashley Cole's neck for the England position, a move to Old Trafford could quite possibly be the catalyst for Roy Hodgson to follow in Moyes's footsteps, as Cole is also 32.
When Manchester United come calling for a player, as Arsenal found out to their dismay last year with Robin van Persie, it is hard to resist the opportunity. I expect an increased offer within the next few days, and were I Roberto Martinez, I would be expecting a call from Baines requesting a transfer to coincide with that offer.