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Chelsea set to make FIFTH bid for England international in the January transfer window

Chelsea are ready to resume their pursuit of Everton defender John Stones once the transfer window reopens in January, Mirror Sport reports.

The England international, who started in the 6-0 Euro 2016 qualifier victory over San Marino on Saturday evening, was heavily linked with a move to the reigning Barclays Premier League champions during the summer and attempted to force through the switch by handing in a transfer request.

The Toffees rejected the request and also four offers from the West London outfit, which highlighted their intentions to keep hold of the 21-year-old for the foreseeable future.

However, the Merseyside club’s resolve is set to be tested for a fifth time in the New Year as the Blues are poised to launch a bid in the region of £40million in the hopes of finally prizing the player away from Goodison Park.

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Chelsea have looked surprisingly shaky at the back since the start of the season and are yet to keep a clean sheet on their opening four games of the campaign and face Everton when the Premier League resumes after the international break on September 12.

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