Hansen: Stones suits Barcelona’s style

Liverpool legend Alan Hansen says Barcelona would be a great fit for Everton's John Stones, should the defender force a move away from the Merseyside outfit.

Stones has come under the microscope this season, with some criticising his style of play in defence as too risky. However, Liverpool great Hansen believes the 21-year-old's playing qualities could fit well at Spanish giants Barcelona.

"In a footballing sense, and this is purely a footballing consideration, Barcelona would be perfect for him," Hansen was reported as saying by The Mirror.

"The way he plays, and the way they play, would be the ideal match-up. Yes, they have some unbelievable talents higher up the pitch, but they haven't lost a football match for five months because they don't give many goals away.

Chelsea were twice knocked by Everton at the start of the season after former Blues boss Jose Mourinho had made the centre-back his number one target to replace the aging John Terry.

However, Hansen believes the defender still has room for improvement, and suggested the massive fees quoted in the press reflect his massive potential and not his current ability.

"From what I've seen, Stones has all the attributes, but when you read about clubs being prepared to spend £50million on him, at this stage you are still paying for potential. And of course it is important where he plays his football – and that he plays regularly – to help him develop," Hansen added.

The former Liverpool centre-back also put emphasis on the importance of English defenders playing at the highest level, to benefit the national team.

"What England need is English defenders coming through and playing at the highest possible level," he concluded.