Pep Guardiola has confirmed John Stones suffered a hamstring injury in the first half of Manchester City’s FA Cup win over Arsenal.
The Blues beat Mikel Arteta’s side 1-0 thanks to Nathan Ake’s second-half goal and progressed to the fifth round of the competition on Friday night. But the downside for City was an injury suffered to Stones, who has struggled with his fitness since the World Cup.
The defender went down in the latter stages of the opening period following a collision with Leandro Trossard, and had to be replaced by Aymeric Laporte despite the game being deep into first-half injury-time.
Speaking after the match in his press conference, Guardiola was asked if Stones had suffered a hamstring injury, and responded: “I think so.” Quizzed on the length of time Stones could be out for, Guardiola said: “I don’t know. Today he was not ready, I saw it in the first minutes. Maybe he was tired, I don’t know, but he was not ready and that’s why when this happens you get injured.”
Stone’s injury will be an added concern for Guardiola after he missed recent matches against Southampton and Manchester United with a knock. Aymeric Laporte came on to replace the England international and City managed to keep Arsenal at bay for the majority of the second half, with a shot from Gabriel Martinelli the best chance in the latter stages of the game.
City are the first side to progress to the fifth round of the FA Cup, with the draw for the next round to be made on Sunday. The Premier League champions also don’t play again for nine days, until they travel to Tottenham Hotspur on 5 February.