It’s fair to say that, already, Pep Guardiola has put his name down in the history books at Man City. He’s building a remarkable team at the Etihad, and they’re playing some of the best football that England has seen in years.
It took him a little while to get settled, but he was given the time that he required, and he’s repaid the faith given to him by the Man City brass by overseeing brilliant performances on the pitch.
In truth, alongside Liverpool, City are a level above the vast majority of the other teams in England, and at present, there’s an argument bubbling to suggest that this current City team is amongst some of the best ever teams that the Premier League has ever seen.
On the surface, though, so far Guardiola hasn’t really achieved anything that his predecessors Roberto Mancini and Manuel Pellegrini didn’t. Sure, City are probably playing better football now than ever before, and of course in time, you’d expect Guardiola to overtake them in terms of trophies won, but he needs to do something else to truly define his legacy.
One thing that would certainly separate him from the rest is by looking towards the Man City academy. The Citizens have spent big money improving their facilities, and that has already born fruit. However, the issue is that other teams are enjoying the taste of that fruit – like Borussia Dortmund following the rise of Jaden Sancho.
If Guardiola truly wants to separate himself from the rest, giving rise to at least one Man City youth talent would be a good way of doing so, and in Phil Foden, the Spaniard has an ideal option.
It seems as though the manager is already working towards that aim, owing to Foden’s recent action on the field. The Englishman has been given regular chances in the cups, whilst substitute appearances have also occasionally sprung up. It’s also clear that Pep Guardiola is having a big impact on the Englishman – as his game has come on leaps and bounds in recent months.
However, that’s the easy part. The real task comes in giving him a real run in the City first team – and that’s an aim that most top managers have failed to achieve as of late.
Guardiola, though, has got the perfect opportunity. David Silva’s powers will begin to wane shortly, and it’s nearly time for him to begin to take a backseat at City. Under Mancini and Pellegrini, he would have been replaced with a top European option; but maybe Guardiola will do things differently.
Make no mistake, if Foden makes it at City during Guardiola’s tenure, the manager’s legacy will become even more historic.
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