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Martinez: Jagielka-Stones pairing best in Premier League

Everton manager Roberto Martinez believes his centre-back pairing of Phil Jagielka and John Stones is the best in the Premier League.

Jagielka and Stones have been rock solid for Everton this season, posting three clean sheets in six matches following Saturday's goalless draw at Swansea City.

The English pair have only shipped five goals, a stark contrast to last term, when Everton conceded a whopping 15 in half a dozen matches, and Martinez has nothing but praise for his trusted duo.

"I don't think there is a better pair of centre-backs in the Premier League," the Spaniard said.

"When you look at John Stones and the way he performs with maturity, the reason he is allowed to play the way he does is because of the influence of Jagielka.

"They are improving and John is improving to be able to learn how to perform under the most extreme circumstances.

"As a footballer, you've got a human being who is inside you and the way he has coped with everything that has come his way has been incredible."

Only Premier League leaders Manchester City (2 goals) and Tottenham (4) have conceded fewer goals than Everton this term.

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