Arsenal are weighing up an offer for Everton defender John Stones, Football Express News understands.
A source close to the Emirates Stadium told FEN that scouts were impressed by the rapid progress made by the youngster last term, which culminated in him winning a stand-by spot for England’s World Cup squad.
The ball-playing centre-half was not called upon by manager Roy Hodgson during an ill-fated campaign which ended in the group stage but he is widely-tipped to play a big part in the Three Lions’ qualifiers for Euro 2016.
Boss Arsene Wenger and his technical staff are said to be admirers of the 20-year-old’s style of play and he tops a wishlist of defenders who could replace captain Thomas Vermaelen.
The Belgium international lost his place in the side last term and is likely to depart during the summer transfer window in search of regular first-team football.
Everton, who are unlikely to welcome a bid for the ex-Barnsley man, are well-placed to retain his services as he still has four years remaining on his current contract.
He has blossomed under the guidance of head coach Roberto Martinez, who has himself recently penned a long-term deal, and they can offer him Europa League football next term.
However, his suitors hope the lure of Champions League action and potential involvement in the Premier League title race will be enough to turn his head.