Sol Campbell has compared Everton defender John Stones to Liverpool legend Alan Hansen after his impressive rise since making a switch to Goodison Park in 2013. The centre-back's rise in form has seen him attract interest from Chelsea and Manchester United.
The Premier League champions were keen on securing his services in the summer, but their bids were turned down by the Toffees. The Blues are still interested in signing the England international in January and will face competition from their league rivals United, ESPN reported.
Hansen was instrumental for Liverpool during his time at Anfield in the heart of their back four. The 60-year-old was part of the squad that went on to achieve success at both domestic and European stages. The former Arsenal defender heaped praise on Stones and suggested the Everton star will be the next Hansen.
"He reminds me of Alan Hansen, the way he plays. There's a bit of Rio in there too," Campbell told 888Sport.com.
"He is a very good defender but he might have to tweak his game because there are times to play and times not to play. That's where he will learn best for sure at Everton. Whether he is at Everton over the next two years is another question."
"He has attributes to go all the way but he has to tweak his game not just for the Premier League but moving forward into international level where he can easily be playing for the next five to ten years."
Its great to see young players happy to take chances but he has to modify his game because the higher you go there are better centre-forwards and they'll think 'Well, he's going to take a chance here so I'll go for him'. He has to sometimes play and sometimes play it easy so they won't know if he's going to come out from the back and try a trick. I'm sure he will learn that," he added.
Everton are aware of the growing interest for Stones and in January would be a massive blow for them. However, Roberto Martinez has played down all the speculation surrounding the central defender's future by ruling out any move away from the club in the midseason transfer window.