Martinez hoping to Ty up deal for Mings
EVERTON are poised to step up their interest in Ipswich defender Tyrone Mings.
The Toffees have been tracking the progress of the highly-rated youngster over the past 12 months and are preparing to make an offer.
Ipswich are reluctant to lose the 21-year-old this season, but Everton are prepared to loan Mings back to the Tractor Boys for the rest of the season.
Portman Road boss Mick McCarthy has told Everton they must cough up around £6million for Mings, although the Toffees are confident they can get him for closer to £4m.
Ipswich turned down a £3m offer for Mings from Crystal Palace in the summer and, while the Eagles are still interested, Ipswich’s preference is to sell to Everton.
The East Anglian club would make a tidy profit on Mings, who cost them just £10,000 when joined from non-league Chippenham Town last year.
Mings signed a new three-year contract with Ipswich last month after an impressive start to the season.
However, that is not seen as a stumbling block to any potential deal.
Toffees boss Roberto Martinez plans an overhaul of Everton’s ageing defence next summer and versatile Mings is seen as one of the key signings.
Phil Jagielka, Sylvain Distin, Antolin Alcaraz and Tony Hibbert are all over 30, while 29-year-old Leighton Baines will join that club in December.
In addition to Mings, Martinez has instructed his scouts to unearth another centre-back who can be the long-term partner for England youngster John Stones.