Pep Guardiola has revealed John Stones will not feature against Arsenal on Sunday.

Stones is yet to play in a Premier League game this season, though was on the bench against RB Leipzig on Wednesday.

However, any hopes he could perhaps start at the Emirates were dashed when the boss said: “No. He’s not ready to play. Maybe for the national team, but not us.”


However, though he is still some way off a return, there was encouraging news about Kevin De Bruyne who has been absent since our opening game of the season.

The Belgian was initially ruled out for up to five months following hamstring surgery, but Guardiola is hopeful he could be ahead of schedule in his rehabilitation.

“Kevin comes in at different times, either before training or for his treatment,” he said.

“After training he sees physios, and so on.

“Of course I see him every day and he’s getting better, and his mood is good. Hopefully (he will be back) sooner than expected.”

The City boss also admits he hasn’t solved the puzzle of replacing Rodrigo against Arsenal.

The Spaniard will serve the last of his three-match domestic ban having missed the defeats against Newcastle and Wolves.

Kalvin Phillips and Mateo Kovacic both played in Rodrigo’s highly specialised position and Pep says he is yet to decide what will happen on Sunday.

“We will see - we start to talk today with my staff,” he said.

“This afternoon I will analyse and prepare for the game tomorrow.

“(Rodrigo is) maybe the best or in the top two or three best holding midfielders in the world.

“Like I said, he’s not here and we’ll have to find a solution with our players and how we want to play.

“Imagine what they can do…. at the moment, in my mind, the player is out, and I don’t’ think about it.

“I’m thinking of the solution we have.

Rodrigo is on holiday now and after the international break, he will be back ready for Brighton.”