John Stones won’t return until he is fully fit says Pep Guardiola

Manchester City won’t rush John Stones back into the starting lineup until he is fully fit. The England international returned to the City squad for their 1-all draw with Liverpool at the weekend. Stones was an unused substitute as the points were shared at the Etihad.

Pep Guardiola told the media following the game that they want Stones to build up his fitness. Pep told the media: “He feels good but we want to give him one or two weeks to have proper strength training sessions. John is so important for us, I like him playing when he’s completely ready.”

John Stones picked an injury in Manchester City’s 3-nil win over Young Boys in the UEFA Champions League last month. He has returned to the City squad sooner than expected. Pep Guardiola initially feared that the defender would face a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

Guardiola also added that Stones would step up his training in the next week. He added: “He’s going to train, partially or complete, with us. His legs especially, to be sure that when he comes back he is stronger. And we then use him, we need him. I’m really pleased with Manu, in the way he plays in those positions”

Given the importance of John Stones to the European champions a cautious approach to his return to the team will likely yield good results for City. Stones has had an injury-interrupted start to the 23/24 season.

One positive for the treble winners has been the form of Manuel Akanji in the role Stones usually fulfils. The Swiss defender was one of his side’s best players against Liverpool, following on from his good display against Chelsea.

Tags Chelsea English Premier League Etihad Stadium John Stones Liverpool Manchester City Manuel Akanji Pep Guardiola UEFA Champions League Young Boys