Stoke City’s centre-back is yet to sign a new contract at the Potters, so should the Hornets make a move for Ryan Shawcross?

Stoke City have defensive concerns with Ryan Shawcross yet to commit to a new deal, reports the Daily Mail. While the Potters consider looking at possible replacements, there should be alarm bells going off in places like Vicarage Road. The Hertfordshire club could do with some more players that have an English heart and some passion, which they could add to the flair players in their team.  

Stoke City’s Joe Allen celebrates with Ryan Shawcross

Watford have done well in surviving two-seasons since their return to the Premier League but they didn’t convince towards the back-end of the previous campaign when they stopped collecting points. That left them finishing on the magic 40 point mark, but only one place away from disaster. Middlesbrough, who were relegated, even had a better goal difference than the Hornets.

If Marco Silva needs a reminder that Watford’s defence needs rebuilding he only has to look at the club’s results in May when they conceded 14 goals in their last five games and did not pick up a single point, as shown by the BBC.

Marco Silva had some strong domestic players in his Hull City side, even if he probably took over there too late to give him a good enough chance to stay up. But this season he could ensure Watford add some steel to their defence. Shawcross has the right qualities – he’s is a battler and no nonsense kind of defender.

Shawcross’ stats are up there with the best. He made 35 appearances and made 709 accurate passes in those games, winning 199 duels, 58 interceptions and 228 clearances in total. He has made 305 appearances for the Potters and has been at the Bet365 stadium since 2008. As a captain of the side he will be on a good wage, but it’s not often that such a powerful defender becomes available.

Stoke City’s Ryan Shawcross in action with Everton’s Romelu Lukaku

Ryan Shawcross is now 12th on the all-time list of minutes played in the Premier League, according to the competition’s official website, and he will want to stay at that level. He has all the credentials to add some leadership to a Watford side that has lost its way at times in recent months.