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Report: John Stones prefers Manchester move

The two Manchester clubs reportedly receive boosts in the race to sign Everton defender John Stones, who is believed to be keen to remain in the North-West of England.

Manchester United and Manchester City have reportedly jumped to the front of the queue to sign Everton defender John Stones in the summer.

It was claimed last August that the 21-year-old was keen to move to Chelsea, who had at least three bids rejected for his services.

The Blues are believed to remain interested in the centre-back, while Spanish duo Barcelona and Real Madrid are said to have monitored his development over recent months.

However, should Stones depart Goodison Park, he would prefer to remain in the North-West of England, according to The Times.

Born in Barnsley - where he started his professional career - the report adds that the England international has a desire to remain close to his Yorkshire-based family.

Recent speculation has claimed that Everton will demand around £50m for a player that cost them just £3m in 2013.

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Nicolas Otamendi takes down big John Stones during the League Cup game between Manchester City and Everton on January 27, 2016
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