Everton are facing competition from Tottenham Hotspur in their pursuit of Wigan Athletic midfielder James McCarthy, the Daily Star understands.
Toffee’s manager Roberto Martinez, who has already took three of his former players to Goodison Park, is keen on being reunited with the 22 year old, who he took to the DW Stadium back in 2009.
However, he fears that the added interest from the North London side will see the Republic of Ireland international’s transfer fee become overinflated.
McCarthy has made over 100 Premier League appearances for the Latics, and was one of their stand-out performers in their triumphant FA Cup campaign last season.
Nonetheless the Glasgow born star, who has also drawn interest from Liverpool, Fulham and Manchester City, was unable to help the club avoid relegation to the Championship.
Chairman Dave Whelan would prefer to keep hold of one of his star assets as the club look for an immediate return to the top flight, but could be persuaded to cash in if the price is right.