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Everton confirm Smith bid

Smith career statistics

Everton have stepped up the pace in the race to sign Alan Smith with a reported £7m bid for the Leeds striker.

Toffees boss David Moyes confirmed the Merseysiders had made a "substantial offer" for Smith, despite their apparent tight finances.

Moyes said: "My hope is to partner Alan Smith and Wayne Rooney in my Everton team next season."

Leeds have already turned down bids of £3.5m and £5.5m from Manchester United for Smith, who they value at £10m.

Everton chairman Bill Kenwright underlined their enthusiasm to bring Smith to Goodison Park.

Kenwright told Everton's website: "David and I have been discussing Alan Smith's situation at Leeds for two weeks.

"I can confirm that in the last 24 hours we have had contact with those involved in the hope that Alan Smith might be an Everton player next season."

If Manchester United are happy they want Smith, then they have to make us happy too by making us a better offer

Leeds director Peter Lorimer

Smith has already expressed his personal preference for a move to Leeds' bitter rivals Manchester United.

But Leeds director Peter Lorimer insists that any move must suit them first and that Manchester United should not try to take advantage of Smith's desire to move to Old Trafford.

Lorimer told BBC Sport: "We want to get the best offer possible for the club, while Alan's agent has stressed that he wants to go to Old Trafford.

"If we were to sell him under market value, I don't think the supporters would like us too much.

"It is obviously his say as to where he wants to go. If he wants to go to Manchester United, and he is happy with that, then that's fine.

"If Manchester United are happy they want him, then that's fine. But they have to make us happy too by making us a better offer.

"If they do that then everybody is happy."

Lorimer added: "If they could show us a bit of kindness.

"We can't let him go for less than the highest offer we have received and there has been interest from two other Premiership clubs in Newcastle and Middlesbrough as well."

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