Everton manager Roberto Martinez has rubbished reports suggesting midfielder Ross Barkley could join Merseyside rivals Liverpool in a club-record £38m deal.
Reports on Tuesday suggested The Reds were preparing to smash their transfer record in order to bring the England international to Anfield following an impressive breakthrough campaign in the Premier League.
Barkley has scored five goals in 21 league starts this season and is expected to be included in Roy Hodgson's England squad for the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil but Martinez has laughed off increased speculation linking the 20 year old with a move away from Goodison Park after previous reports regarding interest from Manchester United.
"According to speculation, we have already turned down a £50m bid from [Manchester] United, so we're not going to take £38m from Liverpool," said Martinez.
"I think its quiet enjoyable to speak about speculation. It shows how well our players are doing and they are the type of football compliments that we want coming our way."
Premier League leaders Liverpool are expected to be able to offer Champions League football from next season, a factor which is expected to improve their ability to attract players to the club.
Despite having Jordan Henderson, Joe Allen and Lucas Levia in reserve, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has made no secret of his desire to find a long-term replacement for current captain Steven Gerrard.
Meanwhile, Martinez has compared Barkley to former Everton forward Wayne Rooney and Barcelona midfielder Xavi and is tipping the youngster to light-up this summer's World Cup.
Barkley's emergence in the Everton first team has been following by the graduation of centre-back John Stones, who has stood in ably for injured captain Phil Jagielka.
Stones has been linked with moves to Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur of late and Martinez is delighted with such speculation, which he says indicates his team are performing to their potential.
"No [I am not surprised]," added Martinez on Stones. "I haven't hear about those figures but I am sure they are going to be on a level that we wouldn't send players on loan either. That's a good sign [that Tottenham and Chelsea are being linked with him] it's not bad for a young man who is just starting his career.
"John Stones has been phenomenal. His place in the team is not going to be based on having other players back, it's going to be based on how he feels and how is his body going with this new experience."
Everton face Crystal Palace on Wednesday looking for an eighth successive league win for the first time since 1985 which would strengthen their Champions League qualification hopes.