Despite his style of play coming under criticism last season, the England international remains one of the summer transfer window’s hottest commodities.
And Manchester City’s long-standing interest in the 22-year-old is no great secret, having been linked with him frequently since the end of last season.
According to The Times, Everton and the Citizens are currently around £10million apart in their valuations, with the Toffees rating Stones at £50million.
But the common feeling is that, with four weeks of the summer transfer window remaining, City will eventually buckle to the Toffees’ demands and table a £50million bid.
That would make the former Barnsley youngster the joint-most expensive defender of all time alongside PSG star David Luiz.
City have stepped up their transfer efforts this week, splashing out a combined £64million on FC Schalke’s Leroy Sane and Brazilian wonderkid Gabriel Jesus.
Everton, meanwhile, are targeting Swansea City’s Ashley Williams as Stones’ replacement.