Everton look set to complete their first signing of deadline day by bringing in highly rated Barnsley defender John Stones. The youngster made his debut in the Championship a mere 10 months ago, and David Moyes has identified him as a potential key to Everton going forward. The deal is rumored to be in the neighborhood of 3 million pounds, but don't expect Stones to make much of an impact this season.
While disappointing to some, this deal checks 2 boxes of Moyes' list. It provides a small bit of cover in defense, especially at the troubled right-back spot, and it helps the defense get younger going forward. Tony Hibbert has been injured for much of the season, and with Seamus Coleman's potential liabilities against certain teams, STones could allow Moyes to have a proper right back on the pitch and keep a central defense pairing of Jagielka and Distin together.
Honestly though this move should be viewed as more of preparing for the future than anything else. I'd be surprised to see Stones have the ability to slot immediately into the squad, but with some proper development at Everton he could blossom into a talented defender. He is well thought of in the league, and has 2 caps under his belt for England's U-19 side.
There isn't much analysis available on his playing style, but to break into a Championship side at 18 certainly takes some talent. He has 1 goal in 28 matches, so I wouldn't expect him to be right-sided version of Leighton Baines, but rather a more traditional fullback. If Moyes moves Coleman up the pitch to right midfield then that is fine as all he needs to do is get forward to help support Coleman, who likes staying near the touchline farther up the pitch.
For now it is a good bit of business, but there are certainly some holes Moyes can fill as with only a few hours remaining till the transfer window shuts.