I will SLAP Roy Hodgson if John Stones doesn’t start at Euro 2016, Danny Murphy warns!

first_imgJohn Stones is far and away England’s best central defender and has to start at Euro 2016, Danny Murphy has told talkSPORT.Three Lions boss Roy Hodgson still doesn’t appear to have settled on a first-choice defensive pairing ahead of next summer’s finals.He fielded Chris Smalling alongside Phil Jones for last week’s friendly defeat to Spain, while Stones and Gary Cahill played in Tuesday’s win over France.But Murphy believes there MUST be a place for Stones in Hodgson’s team, after the 21-year-old impressed with his calmness and his composure against the French.“Come the start of the Euros next year, I will be at the game and if John Stones isn’t starting I will gladly walk down and get Roy, Ray Lewington and Gary Neville and slap them all with a wet fish because he is so far ahead of the other centre-halves in our country in terms of his ability to come out with the ball and pick a pass,” the former England international told Colin Murray.“He is just so comfortable. When you have got a centre-half who is good on the ball, able to go past someone, come out with the ball and see the bigger picture, as a midfielder and striker it frees up time for you and gives everyone more confidence in what you are trying to do.“Smalling, Cahill, Jagielka and Jones are all good players, all very talented lads but, for me, they are competing for one spot. If Stones is fit, he starts.”Stones’ form for Everton sparked interest from Premier League champions Chelsea in the summer, while Barcelona are reportedly keeping tabs on the youngster.He has been likened to former England captain Rio Ferdinand by Barca’s Gerard Pique, and Murphy believes he is destined for the very top.“I would say he is further on than Rio at the same age,” said Murphy.“I think he is the real deal and very much worth getting carried away about.“There is no one else in that England squad that stands out that is going to be the next Rio, the next [Steven] Gerrard, the next Michael Owen. There are some good players but none are at his level in terms of potential.”last_img read more