Roberto Martinez has confirmed that Everton have made an approach for Leeds United’s attacking full-back Sam Byram.
The Yorkshire Post reported last night that Leeds had accepted a £3.7 million bid from the Toffees for the 22-year-old.
Ahead of the Goodison Park club’s match against Chelsea on Saturday, Martinez admitted that Everton have made a move for the talented Leeds academy graduate, but refused to be drawn further on the speculation.
He said: “As you can imagine, there has been an approach. That is where the confirmation came from, from Leeds United, but there is nothing else to comment on at the moment. We have to be very very careful.
“I don’t enjoy the window clashing with important games. Leeds United have important games, we have important games and at the moment there is nothing else to comment. There has been an initial approach, an initial step.
“To having conclusive news for our fans there is a long step still.”
However, Martinez moved to dampen suggestions that Byram’s transfer was anything less than a decision that had been heavily considered. Everton sent their head of recruitment Ian Atkins to watch Byram in Leeds’ 2-1 loss against Ipswich Town on Tuesday.
He continued: “We don’t do things quickly or in a panic. If there is a signing to be made they need to be the right character and additions, that will always be the case. In all processes there are initial steps.
“Some processes are quite long, some are quite short, I am sure everyone understands that. At the moment the only thing that matters for us is the game tomorrow against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.”