Guardiola confirms John Stones interest
29 July 2016, 13:54
Cape Town - Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has admitted his interest in Everton defender John Stones, hinting at a move for the England international ahead of the 2016/17 Premier League campaign.
The 22-year-old, who is said to be valued at £50m by the Toffees, is currently on a pre-season tour of Germany with Ronald Koeman's side.
The England international was the subject of a big-money bid from Chelsea last year, but the move failed to materialise after Everton rejected three bids from the London club.
When asked about Manchester City's reported interest in the centre-back, Guardiola told reporters: "Everyone knows we are going to try. We will see what happens."
The Citizens are known to be searching for defensive reinforcements after losing skipper Vincent Kompany to a long-term injury, and Guardiola believes Stones has the necessary qualities to fit into the style of play he is looking to implement at the Etihad.
"Normally central defenders are strong in the air and aggressive," Guardiola added.
"But we need to have a good build-up to create easy passes in the midfield so they can create good passes for the strikers. I believe when the ball goes from the central defender to the striker as quickly as possible, it comes as quickly as possible back.
"That is why the players in that area need quality. By 31 August we will have the right squad to play how we want."