English Premiership

Stones will play - Martinez

2015-08-28 15:15
John Stones (Getty Images)

London - Everton defender John Stones, who has been the subject of intense speculation of a summer move to champions Chelsea, is ready to play in Saturday's Premier League game against Tottenham Hotspur, manager Roberto Martinez said on Friday.

Stones had a transfer request rejected by the club on Thursday with Everton insisting the 21-year-old is not for sale.

"The chairman was really strong yesterday (Thursday). John knows where he is. We have the perfect environment and the perfect place for John," Martinez told reporters.

"Forget about the speculation, forget about the transfer. Nothing is going to happen, so everyone can relax.

"It's been an emotional time for everyone but John is one of our most loved assets and he'll be ready (to start against Tottenham)."

Martinez urged authorities to close the transfer window before the start of the season and said the focus was more on transfers than on the competition.

"It's important there's a period to strengthen teams but it is not right that you're trying to get to Wembley or win silverware and the talk is who you're going to bring in," the 42-year-old Spaniard said. "It is not healthy for anyone."

Argentina international defender Ramiro Funes Mori, 24, and Uruguayan striker Leandro Rodriguez were guests of Everton at last Saturday's game against Manchester City and have since been at the Finch Farm training ground.

"We're really, really excited. Ramiro was in the building yesterday. We hope to complete the deal sometime today," former Wigan Athletic manager Martinez said.

"International clearance could take a few days. Our relationship now with River Plate is very good and we're confident Ramiro could become an Everton player very soon.

"Leandro will be announced today. He is a young man who can make a goal out of nothing. He has an impressive record."

Spurs did the double over the Toffees last season, but Martinez is confident his side can get a positive result at White Hart Lane on Saturday.

"The scoreline was against us (last season), but the performance was very much a positive one," said Martinez, who won the FA Cup with Wigan.

"When you go away from home you have to be very complete. It's a real challenge to be as good as you can."

Martinez also confirmed defender Brendan Galloway, who picked up a knee injury during Sunday's 2-0 loss to City, was doubtful for the Spurs match.

"Galloway will be the only one a doubt to be included in the squad," Martinez said.


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