John Stones had a slow start to life at Manchester City. After moving from Everton, the Englishman struggled to adapt to Man City’s style and was often caught out at the back.
The last few years, however, have seen Stones transform into one of the most reliable stoppers in the game.
And now, John Stones has revealed what it is like working under Pep Guardiola and what he has learned:
“I thought I knew football to a decent degree when I came. Pep made me feel like I knew nothing. He’s opened my eyes to so much, he’s kind of reinvented my brain. Being a defender for Pep is so rewarding. He expects a lot from us to start play and it’s rewarding when you have trained over and over, what he wants, and you see how it plays out. I absolutely love it, I’m learning. Every year there’s something new,” he stated in an interview with Daily Mail.
Stones spent the second half of 2022/23 operating in a midfield role, which is not something he has done on a regular basis before.
The defender impressed many in his new position, but the player himself has revealed he is still struggling:
“I had done the role a few times in certain different circumstances but without it being permanent as it is now. He saw with my attributes that he could simplify it and help me improve and get better in that system,” he added.
“The guys who play there have done it all their life and they have this 360 vision without even looking. David (Silva) for example, he knew where everyone else was without even looking. Little things like that I had to mould and learn and watch myself back quite a bit.
“The 360 thing was the most difficult for me. I haven’t got that. I feel I do more now but that’s from learning where to receive the ball and how to receive it in certain situations. That was one of the things at the start where I was playing a little bit safer. In a situation where the ball was coming quickly or in a tight area, I wasn’t looking to turn out because nine out of 10 times I would probably lose the ball.”