Everton manager Roberto Martinez has dented Chelsea’s hopes of signing their defender John Stones, saying, “The player is not for sale and that is the end of it”.
Martinez has been critical of Chelsea’s attempts to sign the youngster, even going so far as to claim their approaches have been “illegal”. That hasn’t stopped the London club, though, with a 3rd bid expected in the coming days after their 2nd attempt, a bid of £26 million, failed to impress Bill Kenwright.
Stones made 23 appearances for Everton last season and signed a new 5 year contract in August, meaning Everton are in a position of strength when it comes to negotiating his sale. Martinez said, “Our situation has been very clear from the beginning. We are not a selling club who will lose our best performers”.
The fact that Everton announced the purchase of Mason Holgate from Barnsley – the same club they signed Stones from – on Thursday has got nothing to do with Stones’ situation, according to Martinez. The Spaniard said, “He [Holgate] will be a phenomenal young prospect coming into that golden generation we feel we have at the club and he will be a good one for the future”.