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

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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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