John Stones believes Pep Guardiola’s mid-game changes made the difference for Manchester City in their win over Everton on Saturday.
The Premier League champions struggled to break down a stubborn Toffees defence at the Etihad Stadium, failing to register a shot on target for the first 70 minutes of the game.
Guardiola brought on Kyle Walker and Kevin De Bruyne just before the hour mark, prefacing Erling Haaland’s game-winning brace.
The England defender was making just his fourth Premier League start of the season, having struggled with injuries throughout the campaign.
What John Stones Said
“We have had tough games against Everton home and away so to get the win in the fashion we did with the clean sheet is really pleasing especially after the first half which was so difficult for us to find spaces and create chances,” Stones told TNT Sports.
“We are used to playing against a low block and we have been in this position so many times and patience is a massive thing for us, to not get frustrated and trust in our game plan. We changed a few things at half time which helped massively and opened up the game.
“Kyle Walker and the guys that came on as well had a big impact as well. Our mentality has never changed. We go into games wanting a clean sheet and sometimes it is our own fault and in football you also can’t stop certain things.
“Now I’m back I’m happy and we can go on a nice little run. In previous seasons this period we have coped well in all competitions that we are in. Each game is a final for us and hopefully we are one step closer to our goal.”