According to The Telegraph, Manchester United are prioritising a move for Leicester City defender Harry Maguire, but Everton should try to scupper the deal.

What’s the word?

The publication claims that Jose Mourinho has placed Maguire at the top of his list of centre-back targets following the England international’s impressive World Cup display.

Everton are also in the market for a new defender, and the Leicester man is certainly a figure they should be keeping a close eye on.

Maguire showed the nation why Gareth Southgate was right to pick him for the tournament in Russia.

The 25-year-old was a pillar of strength at the back, but also looked comfortable on the ball with the ability to drive forward and pick out teammates.

Why should Everton swoop?

The Toffees experienced inconsistency at the back last season, with Michael Keane struggling to maintain good form, while Ashley Williams fell out of favour.

If Maguire was to join the Merseyside outfit then he would be an automatic starter, probably alongside Keane.

Phil Jagielka remains the captain of the club, so even though his game time could end up limited, he remains an important figure.

Mason Holgate is still perfecting his craft, so it is likely that Williams would be the defender sacrificed to make way for Keane.

Do they have a chance?

Everton have proven before that they are prepared to spend big in the transfer market, but they could struggle to compete with United.

Financially, the Red Devils trump them, but the lure of moving to Old Trafford is likely to be far greater than a switch to Everton.

Maguire could continue his upward trajectory by playing for a club competing in the Champions League and challenging for the title.

The former Hull City centre-back proved on the global stage that he is ready to take that next step.

With that in mind, Everton may have plenty of work to do to convince him to move to Merseyside.

Danielle Joynson