EXCLUSIVE By Pete O’Rourke
Premier League duo Everton and Newcastle are locked in a January battle to sign Bristol City defender Joe Bryan, Football Insider sources understand.
Everton and Newcastle are both are in the market for a new left-back when the transfer window reopens next month and Bryan has emerged as a top target for both clubs.
Bryan has impressed for high-flying Bristol City so far this season and has been instrumental in helping them to third spot in the Championship table with a number of outstanding performances.
The attacking full-back has chipped in with three goals and two assists from defence so far this term and Bryan is regarded as one of the best young left-backs outside the top flight.
Bryan has come through the ranks at Bristol City and has made over 200 first-team appearances since making his debut in 2012.
A well placed source has told Football Insider that Everton and Newcastle have been making regular checks on Bryan this campaign and they are now weighing up moves for the 24-year-old in January.
The source explained that Bryan’s outstanding form is key to both clubs pushing strongly for the deal to be done.
Left-back has been a problematic position for both sides this season and they are keen to solve their issues by adding to their squads next month.
Newcastle have been without first-choice left-back Paul Dummett through injury since August with Javier Manquillo and Chancel Mbemba filling in at times.
Everton boss Sam Allarduce is determined to add cover at left-back because of Leighton Baines’ injury problems with Cuco Martina forced to deputise at left-back since Allardyce’s arrival at Goodison Park.
Bristol City are keen to keep hold of Bryan as they look to maintain their own bid for promotion from the Championship, but they could find their resolve tested by Everton and Newcastle next month.
In other Everton transfer news, Sam Allardyce makes big revelation about incoming signings.