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Manchester City seal Stones signing

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 9 Aug 2016

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Manchester City have confirmed the signing of centre-back John Stones from Everton on a six-year deal.

The England international moves for a fee Everton have described as a ‘club-record deal’ with reports suggesting it is in the region of £50million.

Stones’ move was expected after UEFA confirmed earlier on Tuesday that City had listed the Barnsley-born 22-year-old in their squad for the Champions League play-off tie with Steaua Bucharest.

“I’m absolutely delighted to sign for City and now the deal’s done I’m looking forward to the next stage in my career,” Stones told City’s official website.

“I’ve obviously seen what’s going on here at the Etihad, it’s an ambitious club with a great manager so I can’t wait to get stuck in and help achieve the goals.

“I know it will be tough getting a place in this team but I’m determined to become the best player I can be and help us to success.

“I had a wonderful time with Everton and wish them and their fans all the best but now I’ll give my all for City.”

City have made little secret of their admiration for Stones and director of football Txiki Begiristain was delighted to have got the deal over the line.

He said: “John is an excellent young English defender and we are all really pleased he is joining us. We have worked hard to bring him to City and we feel we are signing one of the best central defenders in Europe.”

Pep Guardiola added: “We want to help John show his quality with us and improve on what he has already achieved.

“I like the way he plays the game and I’m looking forward to welcoming him into the squad.”

Stones signed for Everton on the final day of the 2013 January transfer window having come through the ranks at Barnsley.

His eye-catching displays for the Toffees earned him an England debut against Peru at Wembley in May 2014 and he was included in Roy Hodgson’s Euro 2016 squad although he did not play a single minute in France.

Despite the upward trajectory in his career, Stones has faced criticism for his ball-playing style which has seen him make a number of defensive errors during his time at Goodison Park.

He becomes City’s eighth singing of the off-season, following on from Ilkay Gundogan, Nolito, Aleksandar Zinchenko, Aaron Mooy, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Marlos Moreno.

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