The extraordinary rise of John Stones

John Stones had an extraordinary rise in the second half of Manchester City’s treble-winning season.

Already an integral part of City’s defense as a center-back with great technical ability, Stones developed a new string to his bow to become a major weapon as City charged to the treble in the second half of last season.

As Pep Guardiola shifted his tactical set-up mid-season, Stones was asked to fulfil a new role for City.

In possession Stones was asked to drift centrally to form a double pivot with Rodri. Asked to play the number six role with City’s midfield general, it bought the best out of Stones game.

City’s English defender always had the technical ability to play in midfield. His passing ability for a defender was arguably the best in world football.

In his new role Stones thrived. The strengths that made him so good at the back, allowed him to prosper in midfield for City. The more Stones played in midfield the better he became.

It formed a lethal weapon for City that allowed the attacking players to do what they do best. With Stones and Rodri behind them, De Bruyne, Haaland and co thrived. It was a genius move from Pep, and Stones flourished in his new role.

The UEFA Champions League final against Inter Milan was the best performance from Stones in his new role. Before going off injured he put in arguably a man-of-the-match display. Stones pressed forward more than previous games, showcasing his ability to potentially play as a number eight in midfield for City.

It was a special display from City’s new found midfield man.

Pep Guardiola’s genius unlocked the best of John Stones. What that may lead to this upcoming season is an exciting prospect for City fans.

Tags Erling Haaland John Stones Kevin De Bruyne Manchester City Pep Guardiola