Manchester City

Forget Sane: Guardiola needs to turn to Man City’s ace in the hole to keep momentum going

The Manchester City fans were delighted in the Transfer Tavern during the January window, having seen their side seemingly refuse to overpay for the likes of Alexis Sanchez and Riyad Mahrez over the course of the month.

Still, Pep Guardiola’s side recently moved into the 5th round of the FA Cup with a 2-0 victory over Neil Warnock’s promotion-chasing Cardiff following two first-half goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling. De Bruyne fired City into the lead after just 9 minutes with an intelligent free-kick that was struck underneath the jumping Cardiff wall and skipped into the bottom-corner of Neil Etheridge’s goal – a strike which demonstrated the plethora of tricks the Belgian wizard has up his sleeve.

City moved into cruise control 28 minutes later as Bernardo Silva found Raheem Sterling unmarked inside the penalty area with a delightful cross, and the latter made no mistake in heading the ball into the top-corner. However, The Citizens good work in the first-half was slightly marred by the injury collected by Leroy Sane just before the interval following a rash challenge from Joe Bennett.

In the aftermath of proceedings, it’s been revealed that Leroy Sane will be out of first-team action for up to six weeks due to injury. City can boast one of the strongest squads in world football, but they are not blessed with a player quite like Sane who naturally prefers to hug the left-hand touchline, so his absence will undoubtedly be a huge blow.

With that to consider, Guardiola should hand Phil Foden the opportunity to impress in the first-team, as his ability and style of play closely resembles that of Sane.

Foden is just 17-years-old and hugely unexposed at the highest level of the game, but his experience in England’s U17 World Cup campaign should hold him in good stead within City’s first-team. Although the Stockport-born youngster is not accustomed to playing on the left-side of midfield, the fact he is naturally left-footed will help maintain the balance Sane provides on that side of the pitch. Therefore, Guardiola should make a bold decision and hand Foden the opportunity to fill the void left by the German international in the weeks to come.


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