Ruud Gullit recently discussed Manchester City’s John Stones and Pep Guardiola during an interview on the Up Front podcast with Simon Jordan. Gullit highlighted the transformation in Guardiola’s perception of Stones, who is currently valued at £47.5 million.
In 2020, Stones faced a period on the bench behind Aymeric Laporte, Ruben Dias, and Nathan Ake, slipping down the pecking order since joining from Everton in 2016. Guardiola, acknowledging the situation, mentioned that Stones would “have the chance” to prove himself, as reported by The Guardian at the time.
Fast forward to the present, and Stones has successfully seized that opportunity, evolving into a crucial figure at the Etihad Stadium. He has not only reclaimed his place in the defense but has also demonstrated versatility by excelling in a unique midfield role.
Gullit revisited this narrative, emphasizing Guardiola’s ability to adapt, stating, “How much did he spend to get the players at the back? Stones was not even his most important player; he put him on the bench. Then later he found out, oh, he can play in midfield. Sometimes just one thing can change it.”
Despite facing uncertainties about his future at Manchester City, Stones made a remarkable comeback, contributing significantly to the team’s achievements, including a treble-winning campaign.
However, Stones is currently grappling with injury concerns following a knock in Tuesday’s 3-0 victory over BSC Young Boys in the UEFA Champions League. Having recently returned from a prolonged absence due to hip and hamstring issues, the 29-year-old is now sidelined again. Guardiola expressed concern, stating that Manchester City is “in trouble,” and Stones will be out “for a while,” posing a significant setback for the team. The hope now is for Stones to recover swiftly and play a role in Manchester City’s pursuit of more silverware this season.