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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Football

Manchester United bids a 'waste of time', says Martinez
AFP
London, August 20, 2013
First Published: 19:00 IST(20/8/2013)
Last Updated: 19:08 IST(20/8/2013)

Everton manager Roberto Martinez on Tuesday described Manchester United's twin pursuit of left-back Leighton Baines and midfielder Marouane Fellaini as a "waste of time".

Everton revealed on Monday that they had rejected a bid of ?28 million ($44 million, 33 million euros) from United for the two players, branding it "derisory and insulting".

With the season now under way, Everton having drawn 2-2 at Norwich City on the opening day of the Premier League campaign, Martinez hopes the speculation about the two players will go away.

"It's been well documented what happened with the transfer speculation. That's been dealt with and it was all a little bit of a waste of time -- time I don't want the players to waste," he said.

"I think the start of the season was important for us at Norwich and I won't come out now and carry on talking about the speculation.

"The players have had the demands of international football and then they started the league with a lot of travelling, so obviously you can imagine it's been important these past few days that we can get them recovered, regenerate them in the right manner and get them ready for the next game.

"That, at the moment, is our only focus."

Martinez had previously revealed that a buy-out clause in Fellaini's contract, believed to be for ?23.5 million, expired at the end of July.

The offer from United, who are now managed by former Everton boss David Moyes, reportedly valued Fellaini at ?16 million, with Baines valued at ?12 million.


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