Barca to launch £25m bid for Everton defender

Barcelona have reportedly stepped up their interest to sign Everton defender John Stones and will launch an initial £25m bid next week, according to the Daily Mail.

The 22-year-old has already been heavily linked with number of clubs, including Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United.

However, the Spanish champions are now determined to hijack a move for the England centre-back after closely scouting him for the past two seasons.

It is reported that the Catalan giants favoured a move for Marquinhos, but the Paris Saint-Germain are unwilling to sell him this summer.

Everton are said to value their pivotal defender somewhere around £50m price tag.

Stones has made 95 appearances for the Toffees since arriving to the Goodison Park from the Championship outfit Barnsley.