Everton manager Roberto Martinez’s latest comments on John Stones’ future suggest that the defender could move to Chelsea in the future.
The England international was pursued by the Premier League champions all-summer long, with the Goodison Park outfit standing firm and rejecting a number of offers for the defender from Jose Mourinho’s men.
With four years left on his current contract at the Merseyside club, Everton knew they held the power and even a transfer request from the former Barnsley man did not force through a transfer for the centre-half.
However, Martinez has stated that the player’s future will be assessed again next summer, with the best interests of the football club dictating where Stones will play in 2016-17.
“There are right times and wrong times to lose players – and at this moment, John Stones is paramount in everything we do,” The Daily Star quote the Spaniard as saying.
“It is very important for us to have John and I truly feel for his development and for his career this is the perfect place for him to be, to play for Everton.
All I am interested in is what Everton need this season.
“From that point on, we will need to make another decision on what we need to be better going into next season.”
Chelsea are in the market for a long-term replacement for John Terry, who has started to show his age in an underwhelming start to the new campaign for the West London club.