Manchester City Transfer Rumours: John Stones to join next week in a £53 million deal
The Everton defender had been linked with a move away from Merseyside last season with Chelsea leading the race for his signature.
Manchester City are closer than ever to complete a deal for Everton's central defender John Stones in a reported £53 million transfer. According to reports from Metro, Pep Guardiola sees Stones as the ideal player to take the mantle of City's defense for years to come.
The reported £53m will make Stones the most expensive defender of all time beating David Luiz's £50m transfer to PSG couple of seasons ago. It will also make Stones the most expensive English player of all time taking over from City's Raheem Sterling, who was sold by Liverpool for a whopping £48m.
Stones was linked with a move to Chelsea last summer but Everton knocked back three official bids and held on to the player. However, the England International is determined to force his way out of Goodison Park this summer.
According to the Liverpool Echo, Stones held a conversation with Koeman about his role at Everton and has expressed his desire to join Pep's project at the Etihad.
Guardiola has already signed Ilkay Gundogan and Nolito this summer and is expected to spend big in the remaining weeks of summer transfer window. The likes of Ricardo Rodriguez, Leroy Sane and Thiago are linked with a transfer to the Etihad and complete Guardiola's squad overhaul ahead of the next season.
Despite the lofty price tag for Stones not many are convinced with his abilities as a reliable Premier League defender. He did not feature in a single game for England at Euro 2016 and was heavily criticised for his erratic defending for Everton last season.
Stones may possess the qualities Pep wants from his defenders but spending £53m is nothing short of a gamble on him especially when he is not at his confident best. Everton, on the other hand, are bracing themselves for a mega offer from City in coming weeks as the Daily Star is confident of Stones becoming Pep’s third summer signing in a matter of days.
Manchester City kick off their pre-season campaign in about 5 days time and Guardiola wants Stones deal wrapped up at the earliest so that he joins up with his new teammates and understands the playing style and what is asked of a player who plays in Guardiola’s passing game.
Elsewhere, City are also in talks to sign Barcelona goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, who has been priced at £20m, according to reports from Marca.