One of the big transfer sagas of the summer has been the possibility that Sergio Ramos may leave Real Madrid, where he has made 314 appearances for the club. He was key to Spain's victories in the 2010 World Cup and the Euros either side of it.
Ramos would undoubtedly be a first choice at any club in the world. Manchester United appear most keen with much speculation surrounding potential cash deals, or a direct swap for want away keeper and player of the season David De Gea. While he is an incredibly talented centre back he is perhaps not the wisest choice for United, with rising star John Stones potentially offering better value for money.
Stones is just 21-years-old but was a regular for Everton last season and was named as a back up for England's 2014 World Cup Squad, having made his international debut earlier that year, albeit as a right back rather than his natural position in the centre of defence. With Ramos nearing 30-years-old he would bring experience, however United new boy Bastian Schweinsteiger has already added that to a squad littered with experienced players such as Michael Carrick and captain Wayne Rooney. Stones would offer the club a long term replacement for the void left by Nemanja Vidic.
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Manchester United have never struggled to incorporate home grown talent into their squad, priding themselves on their use of British legends such as Wayne Rooney, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes. But that doesn't reduce the importance of these players. As an Englishman he would give the club the home grown status that has caused issues for rivals Manchester City and Chelsea last season.
Stones is a highly rated talent and has shown his worth over the last season. He is consistently impressive at the back and, should he make the move, he would have far less pressure than Sergio Ramos to perform week in week out.
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While both players will probably cost a similar fee the long term costs will be very different. Ramos has about five good years of football remaining (give or take a couple of years) while Stones has an extra nine years on top of that. As well as this the players wage difference will be monumental, probably saving Manchester United over £100,000 a week.
In my opinion Stones represents a better deal, however many would argue differently. Feel free to leave a comment below to let us know your view.