Everton have made it clear that they won’t sell John Stones to Chelsea in the summer.
The reason being, the club do not have enough time to find a suitable replacement for Stones, as only less than a week remaining for the window to slam shut.
But what will Everton do if Stones, who till now has remained silent over the transfer saga, puts in a transfer bid?
According to reports from The Times, the England defender has informed Roberto Martinez that he wishes to join Chelsea, if possible.
Everton have maintained a firm stance through out the summer that Stones is not for sale. The England international is now contemplating whether to force through a move by officially requesting a transfer.
Chelsea have had three earlier bids rejected for Stones – the latest of them for £30m last week. The London club sees him as an ideal long term replacement of skipper John Terry, hence, The Blues are even prepared to up their offer, and submit a massive £40m bid for the 21-year-old defender.
At the same time, the time is running out quickly, and so Chelsea have started looking for alternatives elsewhere in case Everton refuse to consider their fourth bid.
Premier League giants Manchester United are also thought to be reportedly interested in signing Stones, but the Red Devils have yet to lodge any formal bid for the Everton defender.
This is an interesting situation for Stones. He knows he will miss out on a great opportunity to join a big club at such an early stage in his career, a decision he might regret later.
Secondly, he could fulfil his ambitions of playing in the Champions League, which with Everton seems difficult at this moment. Furthermore, the offer of competing for first team places at Chelsea and forging a strong partnership with Kurt Zouma is equally appealing for him.
At the same time, he doesn’t want to force the issue, mainly out of respect for the club and the manager. He understands that the Merseyside club have treated him well and are trying to do everything in their hands to keep him at Goodison Park.
The next few days are crucial. Will Everton reject another massive bid from Chelsea? Will Stones request a transfer move? Have your say below.