Arsenal are reportedly contemplating bringing Manchester City defender John Stones to the Emirates on loan in their quest to boost their defensive ranks.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta, who joined the North London club last year December, worked with Stones during his time as Pep Guardiola’s assistant at City. Now Arteta is looking to work with the defender to bolster his shaky defence as the club continues to ship in goals.
Arsenal’s defence has been woeful for two seasons and the summer addition of David Luiz has not yielded the desired effect on the squad. So the club needs to find someone else to solve their poor defense, having conceded 31 goals so far this season.
According to the Sun, Arteta wants to bring Stones to the Emirates after falling down the pecking order at the Etihad Stadium. The report added that Arteta has been looking at potential options to bring the defender on loan and may use his agency connections in order to make the deal a success. Arteta shares the same agency as the centre-back.
Stones is reported to desperate for game time as he does not want to lose his place in the England squad for Euro 2020, and he is believed to be keen to discuss a potential transfer to Arsenal and would even be prepared to seal a six-month loan to the Emirates Stadium.
A source close to the player told the Sun: “He was in London to see his agent last week and is due back again this week.
“He knows if he is to resurrect his England career he has to get more time on the pitch.
“Arteta is in need of defenders so it could be perfect for both of them.”
Recently, Guardiola admitted that Stones’ fitness issue is a major concern to the club and that has hindered the defender to reach his potential. He added that Stones has not played at his best since he joined City three-and-a-half seasons ago.
“It’s difficult to reach the potential that he has, he has to be at the level to play regularly. The last three-and-a-half seasons he couldn’t do it,” Guardiola said.
“It’s difficult to know the reason why. Sometimes when you have a tough injury, for example like Aymeric Laporte this season, İlkay Gündoğan in the first season or Benjamin Mendy the first year he arrived, it’s unlucky.
“That can happen. But, in the case of John, I don’t know. I don’t know why he’s not able, why we’re not able, for him to be a regular for a long, long period, because he’s a young player. But he’s still young. As a player, he has his future in front of him.”