When John Stones first burst onto the scene with Everton as an up and coming home-grown centre-back with plenty of potential to go on and take the English game by storm, few initially saw much wrong with over-hyping the now 22-year-old defender as one of the brightest top-flight prospects in the entire country – as well as burdening the former Toffees man with a string of rather substantial transfer valuations that would soon amount to a staggering £47.5 million price-tag.
Since the highly sought after England international has begun plying his trade under the notoriously demanding Pep Guardiola at Manchester City however, Stones’ supposed composure as one of the most technically gifted defenders this country has produced in recent years, has subsequently come under a great deal of question and careful consideration.
The 22-year-old was once again at fault last time out as Manchester City conceded a particularly avoidable goal against Claude Puel’s determined Southampton outfit…
Love how Southampton brings through young talent..John stones has been unbelievable for them
— Another Goon (@antoswiftest) 23 October 2016
…yet although the highly rated England defender also suffered something of a torrid spell last time out in the Champions League against Barcelona…
John Stones very poor tonight, let City down at the back, and should have scored. Not buying into this guy's talent..
— Jamie Spence (@JamieSpence93) 19 October 2016
…perhaps some have nonetheless been a little too quick to judge John Stones after his admittedly poor start to the season at Manchester City…
If you're basing John Stones being a flop on a poor performance against one of the best teams of all time then you're an idiot.
— Ben. (@bcwilloww) 20 October 2016
That said, the relevant stats simply make for some concerning reading based on Stones’ recent form among the English top-flight…
John Stones: Has committed more errors that have led to a goal (4) than any other Premier League outfielder since the start of last season
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) 23 October 2016
…which is something you certainly wouldn’t expect from one of the most expensive defenders in the whole of world football…
They were right when they said John Stones was the new Ferdinand
Shame it turned out to be Anton…
— Confused Klopp (@ConfusedKlopp) 19 October 2016
Maybe, just maybe…John Stones was little more than an average, hard-working centre-back to begin with…
John Stones really is a terrible footballer.
One good pass in a match 2 years ago, British media hyped him. Wouldn't make bench League 1.❌
— Jups the Coq (@BlockaCoq) 23 October 2016
…and if the calamities continue for the former Goodison Park favourite in the not too distant future…
People are actually surprised John Stones made a mistake loool he was doing that every game last season ????????????
— Jord ???? (@_JordanBrown23) 23 October 2016
…surely it’s only a matter of time before Pep Guardiola runs out of patience with the once remarkably sought after England international…
John Stones is literally really really awful. No defensive intensity, awareness, anticipation or anything really. More like John Stoned.
— Giggs????Boson (@giggs_boson) 19 October 2016