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Martinez working to keep Leighton Baines at Everton

As Everton and Roberto Martinez fight to convince Baines to stick with the Toffees, Manchester United are reportedly upping their bid for the fullback.

Mike Hewitt

On the heels of Manchester United's rejected £12 million bid for Everton fullback Leighton Baines, reports are surfacing today that United have upped their offer to £16 million. It's a number that will still be too low for a majority of Evertonians -- as it should be since Everton know damn well that Moyes wants Baines -- so hopefully it's either nonsense or the team will continue to hold firm.

While we certainly don't want this to drag on all summer, especially if a switch becomes inevitable, we also don't want Everton to fold like a cheap card table. They'll need to secure every possible penny for a transfer to give Martinez additional funds to bolster the squad and attempt to find a player, or players, to replace the production that Baines provides.

There are encouraging reports from the BBC that Roberto Martinez is working hard to convince Baines to continue with the Toffees. The two spoke via phone before the initial United bid became public knowledge and there are expectations that Everton will offer Baines a new deal to entice the 28-year-old English international to commit his future to the club.

For now though, this all remains speculation in the wake of the first bid which is the only element of this story we know for certain. No need to panic but it's worth considering some options should Baines decide to move on.