Chelsea are set to make another move for Everton defender John Stones in January after being rebuffed in their attempts to sign the 21-year-old last summer. The England international has emerged as one of the best defenders in the division and his performance against France in the midweek is likely to increase his value in the market.
The Daily Mail reports that Jose Mourinho is set to dispose Papy Djilobodji, with Besiktas interested to take him off Chelsea's books. The Portuguese manager made an incredulous move for the Senegalese international last summer, who has made only one appearance thus far, against Watsall in the Capital One Cup.
This should make way for a renewed bid for Stones, for whom they have already had a £30m ($46m) bid rejected by Everton. The defender had put in a transfer request, but Roberto Martinez handled the situation well, keeping the player off Chelsea's clutches. This has proved to be a brilliant move for Stones, whose performances in the league have led to interest from Barcelona and Manchester United, according to the Telegraph. Both teams have been monitoring his progress.
Meanwhile, Spanish footballer Gerard Pique praised Stones and said that he should fill the gap left by John Terry and Rio Ferdinand in the England squad. He stated that the defender has all the attributes to become one of the best in the business. Stones is likely to cost in excess of £40m, which should not be a stumbling block for teams pursuing his signature.
Chelsea are in dire need of replenishment, having made the worst start in the league following Roman Abramovich's reign and a move for Stones would go a long way in strengthening their defence, which has been leaking goals this season.
However, they are placed 16 in the league, which may prove to be a stumbling block in their pursuit of the defender. The Blues are set to miss out on Champions league action next season, which could affect their chances of getting quality players.