Manchester City defender John Stones is hoping his team can keep more clean sheets this season, saying it is a “big target” for the club.
City have been prolific in front of goal so far this season, scoring 24 goals in just six of their last matches. However, last season their defence left much to be desired and they were often slated for being poor at the back. This time round though, Guardiola’s men have looked extremely solid – with their new additions to the squad over the summer impressing.
John Stones is one that has often been questioned over his defensive capabilities, but the England international has been superb so far this campaign, and says that keeping more clean sheets this season has been a big target.
“It always helps when we’re winning and scoring goals and keeping clean sheets. From my perspective, and for the back four and the ‘keeper, keeping clean sheets has been a big target and we’ve been defensively solid in the Premier League and Champions League.” Stones said.
“It’s about carrying that on now. It’s a big thing for me and it’s as satisfying as the boys up the top scoring.”
Speaking about the Sky Blues’ 2-0 victory over Shakhtar in the Champions League last night, Stones said he thinks the scoreline could have been more emphatic but praised his side for winning and keeping a clean sheet.
“We knew they (Shakhtar) were a good team. We did our research on them and we knew they could play out from the back. They’re one of the first teams that have come to the Etihad and played like that.”
“I thought our high pressing was brilliant and we stopped them getting out, which is credit to the boys up top. We knew they were a great side and we showed them a lot of respect.”
“Maybe it could have been five or six nil, but we’ll take a 1-0 or 2-0. A win’s a win, however the ball goes in the net, and keeping clean sheets is vital.”
[Quotes via Sky Sports]