Report: ‘Quality’ Jarrad Branthwaite set to be offered new contract amid uncertain future

Everton defender Jarrad Branthwaite is set to be offered a new contract at the club as the Toffees look to ward off interest in the 21-year-old.

The ‘quality’ centre-back has been linked with a move to Manchester United throughout the summer as he emerged as a target for Erik ten Hag.

However, Everton are reportedly keen on tying down the prodigious defender with renewed terms after an impressive period in his development.

That is according to the Daily Mail, who report that the England U-21 star is now ‘pushing’ for a place in Sean Dyche’s starting XI.

The 21-year-old has yet to feature in a competitive game for the Everton boss, having spent last season on loan at Dutch side PSV Eindhoven.

Branthwaite then lifted the U-21 European Championships with Lee Carsley’s England side along with Everton teammate James Garner, before returning to Merseyside for pre-season.

Indeed, the young defender put in some impressive displays during the summer’s friendly games, particularly at Goodison Park as Everton beat Portuguese side Sporting CP 1-0.

Branthwaite must start ahead of liability Michael Keane

Despite his pre-season form, Branthwaite has not made Dyche’s starting XI for the opening two Premier League games of the season.

The Toffees crumbled to a 1-0 defeat at home to Fulham on the opening day, despite creating a plethora of chances, before a 4-0 drubbing at Villa Park yesterday afternoon.

Everton’s defensive ineptitude was almost comical at times with Michael Keane once again putting in a calamitous and costly display.

Tying Jarrad Branthwaite down on a long-term contract at Goodison Park would be a huge boost for the club at a time when positivity is in limited supply.

However, if the club are to keep hold of the talented youngster, they are going to have to give him minutes on the pitch – hopefully starting with Wolves’ visit to Goodison on Saturday.

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