West Ham United are looking to take advantage of Everton manager Sam Allardyce's desire to trim his lop-sided squad by making a move for Tom Davies as David Moyes seeks to bolster his central midfield options ahead of the business end of the campaign.
Davies is highly thought of by the powers that be on Merseyside after breaking into the Toffees' first-team squad under former boss Ronald Koeman and was rewarded with a new long-term deal last summer after establishing himself in the starting line-up at Goodison Park.
The teenager, who was handed his senior debut by Roberto Martinez almost two years ago, flourished in the second half of the previous campaign but has so far been unable to replicate those performances this season, though he is not the only Everton player to suffer a dip in form.
He has still featured regularly for his boyhood club, making 26 appearances in all competitions including 16 starts, but his performances have not warranted a regular starting position under Koeman or Allardyce, who has preferred to use the fit-again James McCarthy in recent matches.
Davies' amount of game-time could decrease further if Allardyce manages to bring Sevilla's Steven N'Zonzi to Everton this month, and West Ham, who have also been credited with an interest in the Frenchman, are keen to force their former manager's hand and convince the troubled Merseysiders to part with one of their prized young talents, according to The Mirror.
West Ham boss Moyes is intent on freshening up his engine room this month and is searching for alternatives to Bournemouth's Harry Arter, who looks set to remain on the south coast. The Irons are not prepared to meet the Cherries' £15m asking price for the Republic of Ireland international, though a move for Davies would likely cost more due to his nationality, age, length of contract and Everton's reluctance to let him leave.
West Ham have also been credited with an interest in Everton's Morgan Schneiderlin, but a swoop for the maligned Frenchman is not being worked on at the moment. Former Everton boss Moyes, who has turned the Hammers around since succeeding Slaven Bilic late last year, was also hoping to bring Robert Snodgrass back from his loan at Aston Villa, but the West Ham hierarchy are not prepared to repay the £2m loan fee Steve Bruce's men shelled out in the summer.