Man City News

Sam Lee says Guardiola ‘knows how good’ City star is and is ‘not considered’ as someone to sell


John Stones came in for criticism from Pep Guardiola after picking up an injury in Manchester City’s FA Cup win over Arsenal, but Sam Lee of The Athletic says the City manager isn’t planning to get rid of the 28-year-old, “Guardiola has long had doubts about Stones’ “reliability” fitness-wise — the manager’s words — but knows how good he is when available.

“It was curious that the manager seemed to blame the 28-year-old for getting injured against Arsenal last week, another hint that things are not right behind the scenes with some players, but Stones is not currently considered as either somebody to sell or somebody who wants to be sold.”

Stones has made 18 appearances in all competitions this season, missing a handful of games due to a hamstring problem in October, so he’s a regular when fit and thus ‘not considered for sale’.

The England international has started in eight of City’s last nine Premier League outings, amassing 720 minutes from a possible 810. Stones hasn’t played as much in the domestic cups, but his future is safe in Manchester.

Stones is 3rd among defenders in the City squad for aerial duels won per game (1.4), 3rd for tackles per game (0.9), 3rd for clearances per game (1.6), joint-2nd for blocks per game (0.4), 3rd for passes made per game (73) and 1st for pass completion (94.3%).

Stones is an important player to Guardiola while having three-and-a-half years remaining on his deal at the Etihad, so City aren’t obligated to cash in early. Stones is a talented defender and fits the bill of what Pep wants in a defender, so it makes little sense to offload him.

In other news, Ruben Dias has ‘barely featured’ but Pep Guardiola’s ‘not concerned’ about him leaving

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He joined from Newcastle in 2000 and left to join FC Sochaux in 2003

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