The scrimmaging for position in the race to sign Birmingham City winger Nathan Redmond has stepped up another gear, with Roberto Martinez ready to green light a £3m swoop for the England U21 international in a bid to fight of competition from a hosts of other top flight admirers.
Everton are one of at least seven Premier League teams to show interest in signing the Blues academy product, with Crystal Palace, Fulham, Swansea and Norwich each previously having submitted £2m bids.
Redmond announced himself into the wider footballing consciousness with a goal-scoring man-of-the-match performance against Nacional in City’s 2011/12 Europa League campaign and went on to make 37 appearances across all competitions that season, bagging some spectacular strikes for his YouTube greatest hits along the way.
With success coming so quickly and easily for the Kitts Green native, complacency and less-than-100-per-cent training performances reportedly crept in during the early portion of the last campaign. However, incoming gaffer Lee Clark diagnosed the problem and treated it with doses of match-day squad omission, an approach rewarded heartily by the winger’s performances in the second half of the campaign.
Redmond was one of the few shining lights in England’s European Under 21 Championship failure, with his showings stoking up enough interest to make it tough to envisage him starting the next campaign at St Andrews.
Given his tender age the right move for Redmond will be to a team that can offer a level of responsibility that allows him to flourish without being overworked.
At winger-heavy Swansea an unpalatable level of competition awaits, with Nathan Dyer, Pablo Hernandez and Wayne Routledge all operating in similar attacking briefs.
As a direct replacement for Wilfried Zaha, Palace would need to be playing him most games and as such wouldn’t be able to bring him along with care, as current manager Clark has suggested may be key to his continuing development.
The Toffees have senior pros Stephen Pienear and Leon Osman in the wide midfield positions, whilst Marouane Fellaini has been employed as a second-striker, a role that Redmond has excelled in at times in the past.
It may be that of the interested parties West Brom would be the ideal next step for the Birmingham star, with Graham Dorrans a far from imposing first in the queue for a berth on the Baggies right flank last term. Close to home, a move to the Hawthorns would also allow Redmond to stay close to his roots, providing an extra part of the support network that can see the teenager continue to flourish.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.