Men's Team

Stones: Patience the key to victory over Fulham

Stones: Patience the key to victory over Fulham
John Stones has praised City's ability to remain patient as Pep Guardiola's men secured a commanding 3-0 Premier League victory over Fulham at Craven Cottage.

After being nullified by an organised Fulham for the first 45 minutes, City kept calm and emerged from the interval in explosive fashion, with Stones touching in the opener with a little over a minute played from the restart from a perfect Joao Cancelo cross.

The goal gave City all the momentum and nine minutes later, Gabriel Jesus netted a second, before Sergio Aguero calmly slotted in a penalty to make it three after 60 minutes - the Argentine's first Premier League goal in 417 days after an injury-riddled year.

Stones defended strongly to help City to another clean sheet, extending the lead at the top of the table to 17 points and the Englishman feels City's patience during the encounter was impressive.

"Everyone that came in today deserves every bit of credit for the way we played," he said. "We fought and stayed so patient, which is difficult in moments like this.

"I’m glad to get on the scoresheet again. We knew that they keep such a high line from set-pieces. I tried to time my run as best as I could. The ball was great from Joao [Cancelo]. We told him to go over earlier to have an in-swinging ball and it paid off.

"I think we’ve all played so many games," he responded when quizzed regarding the changes to the starting team. "We know that the squad is rotated because of the schedule of whatever it may be that the manager decides. We all know our roles and responsibilities."

The goal takes the centre-back's league tally to four and after a season of consistent performances in defence, he admitted that he has an eye on an international recall for England. 

"Definitely. It is a massive honour for me and being out of the England squad has been really difficult for me.

"I’ve worked really hard to get back in the team here and the England call up, if it comes, is progress from what I’ve done here at City."

Relegation-threatened Fulham put up a good fight in the first half and managed to limit City to few chances before the interval and still remained positive in the latter stages despite conceding the three quick goals.

Stones had nothing but praise for Scott Parker's side.

"Give a lot of credit to Fulham. The way they play their football doesn't really reflect where they are in the table.

"They’re a strong opposition and they made it hard for us in the first half. It was hard to find space in the pockets and in behind.

"We corrected a few things and it was great to get three points again and another clean sheet."

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