John Stones, the man of many skills as we as fans and the general punditry need to put some respect on his play this season.
After his incredible performance on Saturday’s really good win over Liverpool, he has attracted plenty of attention and praise.
In and out of possession, the England man is again showing why, for many, he is one of the best defenders in world football.
Despite injuries this season, he has had so much faith put onto him by Pep Guardiola.
A centre back by trade usually, many have noted how he has recently been asked to play in the unique right-back/midfield hybrid role which Pep Guardiola has made as a new wrinkle on his spectacular tactics.
From Pep after the Pool match:
“I thought when I arrived that he has the quality to play there,” he said.
“It is different when you see all the game in front of you. In that position he is surrounded from Henderson, Salah, Fabinho, Elliott, Gakpo.
“He is surrounded like a bubble. To play there is not really easy. You have to have a lot of personality.”
So, let’s see some stats to corroborate all the praise e have for Mr. Stones. Provided by mancity.com:
Stones has only lost possession of the ball with 6.7% of his touches this season in the Premier League (87/1300), the lowest rate of any player with more than 150 touches.
In line with that, Stones has completed 1075 of his 1148 passes.
A really good breakdown of why he has become such an important player and one seemingly finally respected in pundit circles as a world class defender.
Lastly, when we come to one-on-one defending, Stones remains one of the best. He has been dribbled past just twice in 1360 minutes of Premier League action in 2022/23. That equates to 0.13 per 90 minutes played, which is the best in the league ahead of Arsenal’s William Saliba (0.15).
Stones is a monster at this and he has really proved good in the last few months. We’re glad the rest of the Premier League and others are seeing that now.