Arsenal ready to speak to Manchester City misfit John Stones over January transfer move

Arsenal transfer target John Stones looks on ahead of Manchester City's Champions League clash with Olympiacos
John Stones could be offered an escape route of Manchester City by Arsenal (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal are reportedly plotting a move to sign out-of-favour Manchester City centre-back John Stones in the January transfer window.

The 26-year-old has failed to live up to expectations since swapping Everton for City in 2016 and is struggling for regular minutes this season, with Pep Guardiola favouring Aymeric Laporte and summer arrival Ruben Dias at the heart of his defence.

Stones will be desperate to boost his game-time in order to win back a place in Gareth Southgate’s England squad ahead of next summer’s European Championships and could be faced with a tough decision should Arsenal step up their interest for his signature this winter.

Stones is looking to boost his minutes ahead of the delayed European Championships (Picture: Getty)

According to Eurosport, the Gunners are one of several clubs keeping close tabs on the situation and have asked to be kept informed about any developments regarding Stones’ potential availability.

The report claims the north London outfit would like to speak with the centre-half if he is made available.

Arsenal have prioritised bolstering their defensive options in January and head coach Mikel Arteta knows Stones well after his three-and-a-half year spell as Guardiola’s assistant at City.

Arteta will be aware of the potential risks involved in signing the error-prone Stones but is confident he can resurrect the Englishman’s career at the Emirates.

Mikel Arteta looks on during Arsenal's Premier League clash with Wolves
Arteta is on the hunt for defensive reinforcements this winter (Picture: Getty)

Stones was handed a rare start as City thumped Burnley last weekend and Guardiola gave the defender hope of more playing time after his side’s 5-0 victory.

‘He played two already,’ Guardiola said. 

‘The previous season it was difficult to feel it – sometimes for my decisions but most of the time because of injuries.

‘It’s good again because he was so concentrated and didn’t make any mistakes. 

‘What we are looking for from the back four is to not make mistakes.’

On Stones’ reaction to the added competition in City’s squad, Guardiola added: ‘It’s not too complicated to understand.

‘I see the performance and the levels, and the guys that help the team and help me have more chance to play.

‘The other ones have to wait for the opportunity and they have to fight and wait for their moment and, when they have the moment, do it as well as possible.

‘This business it works in this way, not any other way. What happened one week ago or today for example is past.’

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