Bristol City are onto something special this season. Sitting second in the Championship and through to the semi-finals of the EFL Cup after famously knocking out Manchester United, Lee Johnson’s side have come an extraordinarily long way in such a short space of time.
So, understandably, they would rather avoid seeing their squad picked apart in the January transfer window. But Joe Bryan could not have done more to put himself squarely in the shop window.
His stunning goal against United in that EFL Cup quarter-final had Everton fans demanding for the left-back’s arrival at Goodison Park in January. Adventurous, attack-minded and blessed with a wand of a left-foot, he looks every inch a perfect Leighton Baines successor.
But if Everton do want to bring the Bristol-born Bryan to Merseyside, they could make a difficult deal just that little bit easier. After all, they have a player Bristol City want in Premier League 2 winning midfielder Liam Walsh.
According to The Sun, The Robins are keen to land the 20-year-old for £1 million in January. Walsh, who played three times on loan at Birmingham City in the first half of this season, possesses that controlling influence and expert passing range that should make him a perfect fit for Johnson’s free-flowing style.
So if Everton are to listen to their fans and make Bryan a priority in the January window, Bristol City’s interest in Walsh may just play into their hands.
A cash-plus-player deal means all parties would benefit to some extent.