Jack Rodwell could bring an end to his Manchester City nightmare in the summer, with Everton set to offer him a return to Merseyside.
The 23-year-old was once regarded as one of the brightest young talents in the country, but has somewhat lost his way since joining City in a deal which was designed to reach as much as £15million in total. A string of injuries have hindered his progress at the Etihad Stadium, yet the sheet amount of competition for places in the starting XI has also resulted in him being unable to make any progress over the past couple of years.
It is believed Everton contacted the recently-crowned League Cup winners back in January, with the intention of taking Rodwell back to Goodison Park. However, Manuel Pellegrini blocked the move when he was unable to persuade Porto to part with Fernando, the Brazilian midfielder, who he had lined up to add to his current squad.
But according to The Guardian, Roberto Martinez remains keen on the Southport-born player, and will make a renewed attempt to sign him when the window reopens at the end of the season. Such a move would likely appeal to the midfielder, who knows he needs to find regular first team football if he is to push on with his career.
It is also unlikely that City will oppose to such a move providing, of course, they get a decent fee for his signature. Whilst they accept they will not recoup the initial £12million outlay they paid for Rodwell, they will have little use for him if, as expected, they renew their interest in signing Fernando ahead of the 2014-14 campaign.
Martinez, meanwhile, expects his players to bounce back from their 4-1 FA Cup defeat at Arsenal to press on for a top-six finish in the Premier League. The Toffees are currently seventh, behind Manchester United on goal difference, although they have a game in hand against the champions who are also yet to visit Goodison Park.
“If you don’t get hurt by that (Arsenal) you have nowhere to go. We are fully focused now,” the former Wigan Athletic boss is quoted on Sky Sports. “We have just got the league now – 33 points to play for, which is a phenomenal amount. The season is now very much alive for us. As a group, now we have got a clear indication of where we need to get.”