5 Interesting Facts about John Stones
John Stones has finally completed his move to Manchester City. The deal had been widely expected to materialize over the summer. Things came to a head when City manager, Pep Guardiola, revealed that his club were pursuing the Englishman.
Here are 5 interesting facts about Manchester City’s latest big money acquisition.
1. Initially a right back
Stones might have made a name for himself as one of England’s top centre backs. However, he started his career mainly as a right back.
Also Read: 5 Interesting facts about Paul Pogba
Stones signed for Everton in the winter of the 2012-13 season. While he was an unused substitute in a few games, he did not play for Everton that season.
In the 2013-14 season, he made 26 appearances for Everton mainly as a right back. He was even named among the reserves for the 2014 World Cup, as a full back.
It was in the later seasons that Stones shifted his position and excelled in the centre of defence.
2. Zero minutes at the Euros
Stones was the only English outfield player, apart from Ross Barkley, who did not make any appearances at Euro 2016.
With Roy Hodgson preferring the duo of Gary Cahill and Chris Smalling at the centre of defence, Stones did not get a look in. Not only that, he did not even, make a substitute appearance.
Also Read: An open letter to Antonio Conte
His then Everton teammate, Barkley, was the only other outfielder with a similar fate.
3. Golden Boy award 2014
The Golden Boy is an award that is given by sports journalists to a young football player playing in Europe perceived to have been the most impressive during a calendar year.
Stones was listed among the nominees for the Golden Boy 2014 Award. Fellow Everton winger Gerard Deulofeu was nominated alongside Stones. The other nominees were fellow England internationals Calum Chambers, Luke Shaw and eventual winner Raheem Sterling.
This was despite the fact that he had missed the last 2 months of the season due to an ankle injury picked up against Manchester United on 5th October, 2014.
4. Almost a different blue
Stones is a Manchester blue. But things could have been and looked likely to be so different. Last season, then Chelsea manager, Jose Mourinho, pursued Stones aggressively throughout the summer.
In July and August 2015, Stones was reportedly the subject of three bids from Chelsea. The bids were said to be of £20 million, £26 million and £30 million – all of which were rejected by Everton.
Stones was also reported to have handed in a request to leave Everton, but this was also refused. Ultimately, Chelsea had to sign Papy Djilobodji from French club Nantes.
The former Senegal international made just one appearance for the club, as a substitute in the League Cup. The Chelsea defence, which had needed reinforcements, was left short changed. Ultimately, this led to Mourinho’s ouster from Chelsea.
Who knows what would have happened if Stones had moved to Stamford Bridge. Maybe Mourinho and Stones would have both been blues of a different club.
5. Goal scoring full debut
Stones scored for Barnsley on his first start. This was in a League Cup game way to Rochdale on 11 August, 2012. At that time, he had yet to make a league start for the club.
Also Read: Time for RVP to return home?
Stones equalised before half time in the first round match. This resulted in a 4–3 victory after extra time. This turned out to be his only goal for Barnsley. A week later, he made his first league start, in a 1–0 victory over Middlesbrough.