Duo track Hulse
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The 23-year-old has been put up for sale by The Railwaymen after rejecting a contract extension at Gresty Road.
Hulse's current deal expires next summer and Crewe are not prepared to permit him to leave the club for nothing.
The promising forward notched 27 goals last term as Crewe stormed back into the First Division and his exploits have attracted the attention of Premiership duo Everton and Leicester.
It is unclear how much Crewe are willing to accept for Hulse but a cut-price figure of £500,000 has been bandied about as the sum required to snare his services.
That is unlikely to deter his suitors although Crewe manager Dario Gradi remained tight-lipped on the fee he is prepared to accept.
"Rob has chosen not to accept a contract extension and of course he is entitled to do that. As a football club we cannot afford to let him leave on a free transfer next summer," Gradi told the club's official website.
"As a business we have to try and make a profit on our investments. Rob has been with us for 15 years, so we need to make a return on that. Rob understands that and accepts that he owes the club something. There is no animosity between us.
"Rob wants to move on and play at a higher level and when they reject a new contract, it is time for them to move on.
"I would have liked him to stay on for another season and go at his own leisure if you like. I'm disappointed because it is a little rushed and I would have liked him to prove himself in the First Division but that is just my opinion.
"He has had a very good season for us and he has become a 'real' player who has proven he can score goals at this level. It will be interesting to see what type of club comes in for him. Maybe Premier League clubs would see him as a bit of gamble, but if I was in charge of a Premier League club I would think he is worth a gamble.
"We do have a fee in mind for Rob but we won't be publishing what we think he is worth. We have now resigned ourselves to planning for the new season without him."