27-year-old Man City defender in talks to extend his stay – The right call by Guardiola?

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John Stones in line for new Manchester City contract

According to a report by The Athletic (Subscription Required), Manchester City are in talks with John Stones over a new contract. Fellow centre-back Ruben Dias is also tipped to get a pay raise after just one season at the club. The Englishman is currently in the final 12 months of his contract which expires in the summer of 2022.

Stones came through the youth ranks at Barnsley before being snapped up by Everton in 2013. He had an impressive time at Goodison Park which caught Man City’s eye. Since his move to the Citizens, Stones has had his ups and downs, but is tying him down to a new deal an important aspect for Pep Guardiola right now?

Man City are right to offer Stones a new contract

The Citizens have one of the most impressive teams in the land. The defending Premier League champions reached the final of the UEFA Champions League last season, only to lose to Chelsea in the final. Keeping up this level of success requires the club to keep a hold of their first-team regulars, and Stones is certainly that.

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John Stones in action for Manchester City. (imago Images)

After a slow start to last season, the Englishman saw considerable playing time as the campaign went on. He made 11 appearances in the club’s best ever Champions League campaign in history, and was an important cog in Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City machinery last season. At 27, he is still very much in the prime years of his career.

The former Toffees defender can offer a significant number of years to any football club that he plays for and City should look to make sure that it’s them. He has spent 5 years at the club and would now be a trusted figure in the team’s dressing room. Moreover, City cannot really afford to lose another central defender.

The club has already seen Eric Garcia join Barcelona in the summer. Dutch defender Philippe Sandler and Japanese international, Ko Itakura, have both returned from their respective loan spells. But the duo has a total of zero Premier League appearances for City, suggesting that Guardiola does not trust them in his starting XI.

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John Stones in line to sign a new contract at Manchester City to take his stay beyond 2022.

Stones staying is important for Guardiola

And now being one of the top clubs in Europe, fans would want four centre-backs for their senior team at the very least considering the squad rotations and injury problems teams have to consider every season. Dias, Nathan Ake, and Aymeric Laporte are all arguably in the peak years of their career and tied to long-term contracts.

Hence, it makes sense for City to extend the stay of their only other senior centre-back who could become a free agent next summer. That would be a whole different issue in itself. Stones, at 27, is undeniably a top defender and to risk losing him on a potential free transfer would be an unpleasant scenario for his team.

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After all, they did pay a mammoth £47.5m for him in 2016. It is wise not to fiddle too much with a team that proved to work last season. While it is advisable for top clubs to freshen things up every now and then, City should look to keep their main squad intact as much as possible and add quality to their team rather than lose out on important players.

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