Watford have dismissed Everton's approach from in-demand boss Marco Silva, as the Toffees step up their search to replace Ronald Koeman, after the Dutchman was sacked last month.
The Daily Mail report that Everton officials contacted Watford on Monday morning, having made the 40-year-old former Hull City boss their number one choice to take up the reins at Goodison Park.
They were met with a strong rejection from the Hornets, with the Pozzo's desperate to hold onto the Portuguese having led Watford into the top half of the table - just four points off the top six.
It is understood Silva would like the opportunity to talk to the Merseyside club and chairman Bill Kenwright and owner Farhad Moshiri, but the lack of a release clause in Silva's contract means he is bound to the club for the two years he signed on for during the summer.
Silva's stock has continued to rise this term with the progress Watford have made this season. The Hornets have become a more fluid unit and until a fortnight ago were unbeaten on the road this season - ironically losing to Everton.
Plucked from Greek side Olympiacos in January 2015 by the Tigers, Silva narrowly failed to keep to Hull in the Premier League.
A former Steward of Sporting Clube de Portugal also, the Portuguese has quickly became one of the hottest properties in the managerial pool across Europe, and his early days in the Watford job have merely served to increase speculation on his future at the top level.
Watford have in recent years held a penchant to maintain their managerial rotation policy of a almost a manager a season in the cases of Quique Sanchez Flores and Walter Mazzarri, however it would appear the Hertfordshire side are now bent on reversing that with Silva.