Robert Pires urges Arsenal to sign John Stones this summer

Former footballer Robert Pires during the festival

The former Arsenal star believes the Everton man would be a superb partner for Laurent Koscielny in the Gunners defence next season.

England's John Stones

Former Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires has said, as quoted by the Telegraph, that Arsene Wenger should look to bring Everton and England defender John Stones to the Emirates next season to partner Laurent Koscielny in the centre of defence.

Stones has been one of the Toffees players to suffer from their underwhelming season this term, often looking the shadow of the player whom the Merseyside club valued at over £30 million last summer in the face of persistent interest from Chelsea.

However, he has further cemented his status as a regular for club and country in the last 12 months, with his total of 41 appearances in all competitions for Everton this term some 13 higher than he managed in 2014-15.

Everton's John Stones

He has also developed into a key fixture in the England side, and heads to Euro 2016 as one of just three established centre-backs in Roy Hodgson's squad with teammate Ross Barkley billing him as a future England captain.

It has been argued that Stones may have to move away from Goodison Park in order to continue his development, and new Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola was linked with a move for the 22-year-old following his appointment.

However, Arsenal 'Invincibles' star Pires believes his former club should bite the bullet and make a move for the star, with the former French international claiming that partnering Koscielny with Stones would significantly improve the club;s defence.

Former footballer Robert Pires during the festival

The ex-World Cup-winner said, as quoted by the Telegraph: "Arsenal need English players, the Premier League is very physical.

"[John] Stones would be a good player for Arsenal. Can you imagine Stones and Koscielny at the back? It would be a good defence."

Stones will have a chance to impress any potential suitors by impressing at this month's European Championship, where he seems likely to be a fixture in the England defence.

England's John Stones

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch