Albion were today braced for a summer-long struggle over George Thorne despite dismissing an opening £950,000 bid from Derby.
The Baggies rebuffed the offer last night and told Rams chief executive Sam Rush not to bid again.
But the East Midlands club are already thought to be preparing a second bid and Thorne is keen on the move after impressing during a five-month loan spell at the iPro Stadium last season.
And that means Albion still face a fight to keep the 21-year-old despite issuing a hands-off warning on all of their players last night following bids for Thorne and Craig Dawson in recent days.
Terry Burton, speaking publicly for the first time as Baggies technical director, said: “George has progressed through the academy into the first-team squad and we have high hopes for him. He underlined his potential while on loan at Derby and we have no intentions of selling him. We have told Derby he is not for sale and that is the end of the matter as far as we’re concerned.
“The same goes for all of our players. We are not looking to sell anyone. Our only aim is to strengthen our squad this summer.”
Just days ago Albion knocked back a £1m bid from Burnley for centre-back Dawson.
Thorne’s case is more complex, however, after the young midfielder’s outspoken comments last week claiming he did not feel wanted at The Hawthorns.Subscribe to our Newsletter