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Guardiola’s caution helps Stones shine and get back on England radar | Barney Ronay

It is a good time to be a Manchester City centre-back, if only because the team is more committed to the idea of defending

And so the Carabao kings march on. In the course of Pep Guardiola’s four years at Manchester City a fair degree of energy has been expended arguing over how much the great midfield-fetishist, the don of keep-ball, has changed English football. Who knew English football would end up changing him too?

City took the lead in this League Cup semi final with a set piece goal on 50 minutes, bundled in by a 6ft 5in English centre-half. They sealed the win with a long-range shot from a defensive midfielder, three minutes after bringing on a second defensive midfielder to help draw even further down some expertly maintained defensive shutters.

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