Report: Manchester City paying close attention to Lukaku even though they don't want him

Belgium's Romelu Lukaku reacts after missing a chance to score

Everton could be offered Wilfried Bony.

Belgium's Romelu Lukaku misses a chance to scoreBelgium's Romelu Lukaku misses a chance to score

Manchester City are paying close attention to Romelu Lukaku's future at Everton, even though they have no intent of signing him themselves.

The Sun report that City are planning to offer Wilfried Bony in a part exchange swap deal for John Stones in the hope it will boost their chances of landing the defender.

But the kicker is that City will only do this if Lukaku is sold; and in this event they would hope that Bony would be an ideal replacement for him.

Manchester City's Wilfried Bony in action with Southampton's Victor WanyamaManchester City's Wilfried Bony in action with Southampton's Victor Wanyama

Bony has struggled to make an impact at City and faces a battle to prove his worth to new boss Pep Guardiola.

Where Lukaku will end up remains uncertain, after Chelsea moved to sign Michy Batshuayi instead.

Michy BatshuayiMichy Batshuayi

The Sun's report suggests Manchester United as a destination, but Lukaku famously fell out with new Red Devils manager Jose Mourinho while at Chelsea, so this may be unlikely.

Their best best could be offloading him abroad, but the Belgian has done little so far at Euro 2016 to justify his inflated price tag.

Wilfried Bony is an intriguing option for the Toffees. He was prolific at Swansea City, but like many good players who have moved to the Etihad he has found the lack of regular playing time at Manchester City has seen his star fade.

John Stones' future at Everton remains unclear, but City's latest strategy shows they realise that cash alone may not tempt the financially sound Toffees to sell, and that they are trying to find other ways to tempt them.

Swansea's Wilfried Bony and Aston Villa's Nathan Baker in actionSwansea's Wilfried Bony and Aston Villa's Nathan Baker in action

Register for MANCHESTER CITY team updates

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch