By Jason Jones

3rd Mar, 2020 | 4:54pm

Report - Everton set for talks with 23y/o this week

Everton are stepping up their efforts to hang onto Mason Holgate by scheduling discussions over a new contract with the defender this week, according to Football Insider

The 23-year-old has emerged as a target for Manchester City in recent days, with Football Insider revealing that the defending champions have placed the centre back at the top of their summer wish list.

But it is understood that the Toffees will resist any advances for their player by holding talks with him over a new long term deal in the immediate future.

Holgate’s current agreement expires in 2022, and the report states that the Blues have been left feeling vulnerable at the prospect of a Premier League rival negotiating a successful approach for their talent.

Football Insider have also revealed that Newcastle United, Bournemouth, and Sheffield United are also interested in the centre-back.

Should Everton tie Holgate down to a new deal?

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Let’s be honest, it’s an absolute no-brainer, isn’t it?

Holgate has been magnificent this season, and there’s a reason that he has been able to establish himself as a Premier League regular, featuring in 21 games so far this term.

Moreover, he has won an average of 7.58 defensive duels per game so far this season, as well as making 4.93 interceptions and 3.05 clearances per game too, as per Wyscout.

Holgate has been solid and dependable throughout a campaign that has been more than a little testing for the Gers at times.

If they are serious about building a squad that can kick on and become one of the best in the country – and it certainly looks like they are with Carlo Ancelotti at the helm – then they cannot afford to be selling their best players.

Holgate absolutely falls into that category at this present moment in time.

In other Everton news, ‘Unbelievable’ – Brown defends Goodison ace who sets ‘mega standards’ after blunder v Man United.