Everton coach Martinez targets Maloney reunion

Roberto Martinez is believed to be interested in signing Shaun Maloney, a player he knows well from their time at Wigan Athletic together.

The Spanish coach signed the 31-year-old for the Latics in August 2011, when he paid a bargain £850,000 to take him from Celtic. Maloney went on to establish himself as a key figure at the DW Stadium after an initially slow start to life in Lancashire, and scored a memorable winner against Manchester United and also helped them to FA Cup glory in 2013.

Days after that incredible Wembley win against Manchester City Wigan were relegated from the Premier League, and the forward was widely tipped to move on. However, he stayed with the club for their Championship campaign last term although he was restricted to just 10 appearances due to injury, but he has featured 14 times this time around.

Maloney is out of contract at the end of the season, though, and is unlikely to sign a new deal, meaning the Latics will probably look to move him on in January rather than lose him for nothing in the summer. MLS side Chicago Fire have already been linked with the player, but the Daily Mail now claim Martinez is set to make an offer for his signature.

The Everton coach was in attendance to watch Maloney score an impressive goal as Scotland beat Republic of Ireland 1-0 in a Euro 2016 qualifier last week, and he will feel confident he can persuade him to resist the lure of the States in favour of a switch to Goodison Park. Martinez, who has set his sights on UEFA Champions League qualification this season, will hope to land the attacking midfield player for a fee of around £500,000.

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