John Stones has signed a four-year contract extension at Manchester City, the Premier League champions have announced.
The England defender, who joined the club from Everton in a £47.5million deal in 2016, is now committed to City until 2026.
The new deal rewards Stones for a past year in which he has rejuvenated his career, moving from the periphery of Pep Guardiola’s side to playing a key role in their latest title success.
“I couldn’t be happier,” Stones, 27, said. “I love being part of this squad. There are so many quality players here and I know we can continue winning trophies, which is my main focus.
“Working with the manager is a dream – he has taught me so much about the game and I feel like I learn something new every single day.
“This is the best place for me to play my football and fulfil my ambitions.”
Stones, hampered by form and fitness issues, fell down the pecking the order during the 2019-20 campaign and appeared to be facing an uncertain future last summer.
Yet he remained at the Etihad Stadium and took full advantage of opportunities early last season to reclaim a place in the side. He went on to form a solid partnership with new signing Ruben Dias as City regained the Premier League crown.
His performances also earned him an England recall and he was a firm fixture in the side that reached the Euro 2020 final this summer.
Stones feels he has reaped the rewards for a decision to transform his lifestyle.
Commenting on what he has changed, he said: “Everything. It was just doing more training, more gym, finding little details with food or recovery, anything I could find to improve I tried to improve on.
“Coming through those experiences of difficult times not playing, the injuries previous to that – all things that I have tried to learn from.
“I think I proved last season that I found ways to be a better me and a better player for my team-mates. I have set the bar now for myself and I still feel that there is room to improve on the non-football aspect off the pitch and definitely on the pitch as well.”
Stones, who began his career at Barnsley, has made 168 appearances for City and won every domestic honour, including three Premier League titles, during his time at the club.
Director of football Txiki Begiristain said: “This is great news for our club. John is an exceptional footballer and a fantastic defender, whose attributes are well suited to our style of play.
“We knew when we signed him that we were getting a talented centre-back, but he has really matured in his five years here and, as we saw last season, is at the top of his game right now.”
Enjoy the convenience of having The Sunday Post delivered as a digital ePaper straight to your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Subscribe for only £5.49 a month and enjoy all the benefits of the printed paper as a digital replica.Subscribe