Manchester United should join Chelsea in race to sign John Stones

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Reports emerged on Monday that Chelsea had joined Arsenal in the race to sign Everton's teenage defender John Stones after an impressive season for the Toffees this season.

Their interest in Stones comes just over a year since the 19-year-old swapped Barnsley's Oakwell for Goodison Park.

Former Everton boss David Moyes unearthed a gem in the form of Stones as he has gone on to show that he is more than capable of playing in the Premier League.

The teenager has looked adept at both centre-back and right-back during the course of the season, which has led to both Chelsea and Arsenal showing an interest in the England Under-21 defender.

Everton will do all they can to keep Jones in the blue half of Merseyside as Phil Jagielka has missed a large chunk of the season due to injury and Sylvain Distin will turn 37 at the end of the year.

However if Chelsea and Arsenal manage to match Everton's valuation of the youngster - then Manchester United boss Moyes should surely enter the fray for Stones.

Manchester United will be in the market for defenders during the summer as questions remain over the future of Patrice Evra, Rio Ferdinand and Rafael - not to mention Nemanja Vidic who has already agreed a deal to join Serie A outfit Inter Milan.

Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans are likely to battle it out for a first-team spot next season - but Moyes will also need someone who can fill in at centre-back and right-back when needed.

And Stones can do exactly that - as he has impressed at both centre-back and right-back when deputising for Jagielka and Seamus Coleman respectively.

Everton fans would be disappointed to see Stones follow Moyes and Marouane Fellaini to Old Trafford - but the former Barnsley starlet may want to link back up with the Scotsman over the likes of Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger as it was the Manchester United manager who gave him the chance to impress on the Premier League stage.

Moyes may have wanted to let Stones develop at Everton for a couple of years before making a move for the versatile defender - however he may not have an option but to enter the running if Chelsea and Arsenal's apparent interest proves to be fact rather than fiction.

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