Everton turned down multiple offers for star defender John Stones this past summer but will face even more offers for their prized superstar from several massive clubs – including Chelsea and Manchester United.
According to Sunday Times journalist Jonathan Northcroft [per Sky Sports], six major European clubs – Chelsea, Man United, Manchester City, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich- have expressed interest in the 21-year-old defender for Everton and England.
Northcroft indicated that the £50 million price tag the Toffees are believed to have placed on Stones shouldn’t put off most of the clubs interested in his services. He added that although Everton have turned down multiple bids for Stones, the club risks upsetting Stones and the locker room by not giving him an opportunity to move elsewhere.
“He’s on Real Madrid’s shopping list; though whether they’ll be allowed to do transfers in the summer remains to be seen. But he’s on their list of targets alongside Robert Lewandowski and David Alaba,” Northcroft said.
“Barcelona like him, Chelsea have been into him for quite a while now, and Manchester City, who are preparing for Pep Guardiola’s arrival, are also making their move for Stones as well. Manchester United and Bayern Munich are in the background as well.
“It’s an extraordinary array of choices for a 21-year-old lad. It’s going to be very difficult for them [to keep him].
“To deny him a move for a second time would be difficult for Stones to take, and maybe some of the other young players in the dressing room.”
“I can see Everton’s problem, they are trying to build something and they have developed him. But practically speaking it is very hard to keep denying players big moves.
“I think from Everton’s point of view they’d rather he went abroad; if he went to Barcelona to play with Messi I think the fans would understand that. If he went to Chelsea or Manchester United, maybe less so.
“I don’t think Everton have moved on enough as a team this year for John Stones to think his career is best served at Goodison. It was up to Martinez – having kept Ross Barkley, Stones and Romelu Lukaku – to push on.”
Stones is the youngest defender on the England starting team and has been capped seven times for the Three Lions.