Arsenal’s chance of securing the services of sensational England U-21 youngster, may be under treat as bitter rivals – Chelsea step up their interest in the player.
19-year-old defender John Stones has broken into the Toffees side this season under Roberto Martinez, and in the absence of Phil Jagielka, he has established himself as first-choice with a series of impressive performances.
Arsenal boss; Arsene Wenger had recently instructed his scouts to keep tabs on Stones for the reminder of the season, as he plots a possible summer raid. Although Everton are reportedly keen on hanging on to the player but the gunners are expecting a more difficult battle as bitter rivals – Chelsea steps into the picture.
Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho plans to offer the 6ft 2in tall youngster a long-term deal worth £55,000 a week. But this is likely to be put on hold until Stones first settles on the identity of his new agent, With Stones reportedly about to break with his current representative, Georgina Lillis, who secured his £3m switch from Barnsley last year.
According to the Daily Star, Chelsea are understood to be unhappy to negotiate with the new agent lined up by Stones. So until that problem is resolved, Chelsea are unlikely to press ahead with talks. Leaving Arsenal firmly in lead to snap up the player.
Stones has been a sensation during Everton’s Champions League challenge this season and has even been tipped to make England’s World Cup squad.
A strong, powerful and tough tackling defender, Stones is comfortable at both right back and centre half. Both areas where Arsenal plans to strengthen during the summer.
Although it is believed that Everton will be desperate to keep him in the summer, as with English stars Leighton Baines and Ross Barkley, as well as Irish defender Seamus Coleman as the Toffees’ prepare a team capable of fighting for silverwares next season.