By Danny Mills

16th Jul, 2021 | 6:00pm

Mills: Fuming Ferguson may force Small out of Everton after update

Danny Mills has suggested Duncan Ferguson may force Everton to offload Thierry Small.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-England defender whose son plays for the Everton academy delivered his verdict after the 16-year-old failed to turn up for the first week of pre-season training.

The Athletic reported on 13 July that the left-back missed Rafa Benitez’s first week at Finch Farm.

Football Insider revealed the next day that Aston Villa have registered their interest in Small, while Carlo Ancelotti has been foiled in his attempts to lure him to Real Madrid.

Ancelotti is understood to be a big fan of Small after making him Everton’s youngest-ever player in January.

“It’s fine but you’re going to go to one Under-23s side to another,” Mills told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley. 

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“Lucas Digne’s injured so at the moment Everton don’t have a recognised left-back. They’ve got a fantastic coach in Leighton Baines and you’re going to move for what reason? 

“I just think it’s a poor decision. It’s not the sort of advice I’d be giving out in any way, shape or form.

“Now that you’ve refused to go back to training makes it very, very difficult.

“A lot of that comes down to the fact you’ve got the likes of Duncan Ferguson who will be going ‘Hang on a minute, you’ve not turned up for pre-season? You’re almost 17 and you think you’re going to get a move? Not on my watch.’

“How does it appear to the new manager? What does that look like to the new manager? ‘Yeah, I’m not turning back up for pre-season because I’m too good and I want a move.’

“I’m pretty sure that will start to put off other clubs as well.

“The fee at this age would only be compensation, it may go to arbitration. Technically he’s still an academy player because he’s not even signed pro forms yet.”

In other news, a “brilliant” Everton player has been tipped to quit for Manchester giants on one condition.