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Chelsea ready to offer £30m for Stones




CHELSEA will make a £30 million bid for John Stones as they close in on a deal for the Everton defender, Goal understands. The Blues have had previous bids of £20m and £26m rejected by Everton but believe their next offer will be enough to land the highly rated centre-back.

Everton are anticipating the offer and there is now an acceptance that Stones will be sold should Chelsea bid £30m, despite the public stance that the England international will stay at Goodison Park.

Chelsea face rivals Manchester City on Sunday and hope to sign Stones in time for their trip to the Etihad Stadium. Stones, 21, has made it clear to Everton that he would like to move to Stamford Bridge having been chased by the Premier League champions all summer.

Chelsea are understood to have prepared a five-year contract offer worth £100,000 a week for Stones, who has been identified by Jose Mourinho as the perfect replacement for 34-year-old captain John Terry.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has been angered by Chelsea’s public pursuit of Stones but praised the youngster despite his mistake for the second goal conceded in the 2-2 draw with Watford on Saturday.

Martinez said: “He loves Everton, he loves the club and the team and he is an incredible professional, so no I don’t think you would ever expect him to sulk – he will always react professionally.” Stones joined Everton for £3m from Barnsley in 2013 and is expected to leave for a 10 times that sum after becoming a key member of Martinez’s squad over the last two seasons.

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