Pep Guardiola outlines Phil Foden path to replacing David Silva and Kevin de Bruyne at Man City

Pep Guardiola believes Phil Foden will ultimately evolve into one other David Silva, the person who makes Manchester City tick within the closing third of the pitch. The 21-year-old England star gave additional proof of his rising maturity by taking over the Kevin De Bruyne function within the very important 4-0 win at Leeds, and offered two assists and a vital half in one other purpose.

However with De Bruyne rested forward of Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final second leg at Actual Madrid, Foden is anticipated to revert to a large function at the Bernabeu. The England worldwide confirmed one other string to his formidable bow by creating two objectives from set-pieces to finish Leeds’ stiff resistance — an outstanding free kick onto Rodri’s head for the opener and a far-post nook that Ruben Dias nodded again for Nathan Ake to make it 2-0.

Foden then conjured a slick cross to free Gabriel Jesus for purpose quantity three to finish any doubts concerning the consequence, one other glimpse of a future the place he orchestrates play from a central function. De Bruyne is the primary man in that function at current, whereas Bernardo Silva is often trusted to play it when the Belgian will not be within the group.

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However with De Bruyne approaching his thirty first birthday, Foden is earmarked because the fulcrum of City’s future assault; he has lengthy been seen because the pure successor to David Silva. And Guardiola outlined one large addition to his sport that Foden wants to make so as to emulate Silva’s good 10-year contribution to the City trigger.

I think he can play in all five positions up front – wingers on both sides, striker and attacking midfielder in the pockets. He can play all of them,” mentioned Guardiola. “With time he will be more capable of playing in the positions in the middle.

“He still does all actions at high speed and sometimes you have to have some pausa. Now he has the energy of youth and maybe winger suits him better a little bit right now.”

The “pausa” is a Spanish time period for the flexibility of slowing down or stopping the sport to draw an opponent earlier than immediately dashing it up once more, a talent of which Silva was the grasp. And Guardiola thinks Foden will begin to use it extra as he matures, having marked him down as a pure attacking central midfielder from the second he noticed him as a child within the academy.

“I’m pretty sure (he will end up central) because when I started to see him in the academy at 15 or 16 he played the position of Kevin and he played really good,” mentioned the supervisor. “All the actions are so, so quick.

“I always talk about David Silva, sometimes he slowed the rhythm to increase the rhythm and Phil’s rhythm is always high. It’s good because it’s aggressive and we need it, but sometimes he needs a little more in that position – that is only a question of time, not that he cannot do it because he can do it without a problem.”

Guardiola handed Foden the burden of being the primary playmaker within the sport, however the City mentioned he has no considerations about placing the onus on the teenager,including: “Phil has responsibility since day one, he has performed on the biggest stages and important scenarios in important games.

“He loves to play and you see what he does in bad moments. Phil is not a problem.”

With De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez each held in reserve, Foden was charged with being the primary set-piece deliverer, and he fulfilled that with spectacular outcomes, however Guardiola says De Bruyne will assume the function once more when he returns at the Bernabeu.

Phil Foden's expertly placed free-kick was nodded in by Rodri.
Phil Foden’s expertly positioned free-kick was nodded in by Rodri.

When Kevin is there, Kevin is the taker,” he mentioned. “But it’s good for Phil. He is so young, hopefully he can be here for the rest of his life and is a guy with an out-swinger or ins-winger with a left foot. Riyad is good too. What is important is the taker. Put the ball in the positions where it can be dangerous.”

City have develop into an actual menace from set-pieces this season, and the supervisor places that down to the work coach Carlos Vicens has achieved, along with his assist group of analysts: “We are incredibly delighted with the job Carlos Vicens has done.

“He has made it so simple and clear. The secret of set pieces is about the taker. With a good taker, you have a chance. You can make movements to the near post or far post but it doesn’t matter because the taker is the most important thing.

“Today Phil, especially in the first goal was fantastic at putting the ball in the right position and with the runners — Nathan, Rodri, Ayme (Laporte), Ruben – we have weapons.”

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