Chelsea versus City: First battle with Guardiola will see Conte ready to break the bank for Chelsea-target

It definitely going to be one of the most exciting EPL seasons next term, with some of the top coaches in the world getting to face each other almost every other weekend. Guardiola, Klopp, Mourinho, Conte and Wenger taking charge of the top sides, while the likes of Bilic, Koeman, and Ranieri will always look to cause frequent upsets. Before the new season starts, the battle has already begun with Conte and Guardiola aiming to pip each other to the signature of Everton defender, John Stones. The long-term Chelsea target looks set to be headed to the Etihad, but the Italian coach will be preparing a 40-million-Pound bid for his services, as per The Sun.

The 21-year-old England international was always a target of Mourinho, but his club rejected as much as 3 bids for his services. But things are likely to change this Summer, as Stones could have preference for a bigger side. Barcelona are also said to be interested in his services, but a stay in the EPL looks to be on the books. Despite his frequent low points in games this season, most recently against Netherlands in the international break and against Liverpool that warranted him getting subbed off after giving away the 3rd goal in the 4 – 0 thrashing, his stock is yet to drop, and Conte wants him. So does Pep.

With John Terry most likely to go at the end of the season. Stones is seen as a worthy replacement for the Chelsea-grown ace defender. And with the duo of ageing Ivanovic and Cahill appearing to be nearing the start of a dip in form, the once-solid Chelsea defence is getting to fall apart, as evident in the all-round collapse of the club this season. Stones will almost definitely be leaving Goodison Park in Summer, but it remains to be seen if Etihad or Stamford Bridge will be his next port of call.

Related:  Guillem Balagué confirms either Courtois or De Gea will join Real Madrid this summer