By Alex Stevens

Everton have made an approach for Aston Villa defender Jordan Amavi, according to a report.

French publication La Provence claim that the Merseyside giants are rivalling Ligue 1 club Marseille for the signing of the left-back.

It is said that Everton have made an enquiry for information about Amavi, 22, whose representatives have twice met with the Marseille sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta.

The former France Under-21 international is back to his best form after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury soon after his £9million move to Villa from Nice in the summer of 2015.

Amavi has slowly recaptured full fitness this season and has been a mainstay of the team since Steve Bruce took over from Roberto Di Matteo in mid-October.

The Frenchman has made 16 appearances in all competitions this season and is expected to be named in the Villa side that face QPR in the Championship on Saturday.

Everton’s long-standing left-back is Leighton Baines, who has been a mainstay of the side this season and this week agreed a new contract that runs until 2019.

Football Insider verdict:

It would be a poor career move from Amavi to quit Villa for Everton, certainly in January. Baines has been in fine form this season and is only likely to lose his place due to injury. After losing the best part of a year of his career due to the serious knee injury sustained in November 2015, Amavi needs regular first-team football. He is one of the outstanding full-backs in the Championship and is probably playing below his level. But he would be better served by completing the season at Villa Park and then assessing his options next summer.

In the latest Everton transfer news, the club are in talks to sign three midfielder in January, although one deal has hit a stumbling block.