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Resurgent Stones worthy of England return: Guardiola

Fulham 0 Manchester City 3

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Foot race: John Stones puts Manchester City in front at Craven Cottage

Foot race: John Stones puts Manchester City in front at Craven Cottage

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Foot race: John Stones puts Manchester City in front at Craven Cottage

Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City defender John Stones deserves a recall to the England squad after continuing his resurgence with a top-class performance against Fulham.

Stones, who has resurrected his City career this term, opened the scoring when tapping home a Joao Cancelo free-kick as Guardiola's side won 3-0 at Craven Cottage.

Gabriel Jesus scored City's second after benefitting from a lucky ricochet as Fulham tried to clear on the edge of the box before Sergio Aguero netted his first league goal in 14 months from the penalty spot.

Southgate is due to name his England squad this week for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against San Marino, Albania and Poland.

"He deserves it (an England recall)," Guardiola said.

"Of course Gareth Southgate knows better than me what he needs, but just in case it happens, the one person who will be delighted and happy about his comeback for the national team will be me.

"Another great performance, apart from the goal his performance was so important the way he played."

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Fulham, who had conceded two goals in their previous seven league outings, managed to keep City at bay until two minutes after half-time.

The visitors then took control as they netted three times in 13 minutes, the last of which came when former City defender Tosin Adarabioyo conceded a penalty for a clumsy foul on Ferran Torres after he had been caught in possession.

In addition to singling out Stones, Guardiola heaped praise on his entire team's display.

"In general, the game was really good in a tough, tough stadium, they came here and they won in Anfield last week and they always create chances," he added.

"We controlled really well and we played in the first half really good and we cannot deny we scored the first goal in the first minute (of the second half) with John (Stones) and after much later, the second and the third and it was an important and brilliant victory.

"We knew it was important this week with three games in three different competitions, we started with one (win).

"Eight games left in the Premier League, now we focus on the Champions League."

Reflecting on Adarabioyo's unfortunate contribution, Fulham boss Scott Parker said: "Tosin's made an error initially with what he tried and then after that we often see the compounding of that with another mistake as he's desperately trying to make up for that (original) mistake.

"He's learnt quick and he will learn quick, he'll be the type that will come in, we need to understand the differences, and we need to grow and Tosin needs to grow in those moments and we will do that individually and as a team."


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