Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola gave a first team debut to 17-year-old centre-back Taylor Harwood-Bellis in last night’s Carabao Cup clash against Preston, as noted by Sky Sports.
The teenager’s performance was acknowledged by Manchester City-focused Twitter channel @City_Chief afterwards, with a series of statistics testifying to an impressive first half from the debutant.
Taylor Harwood-Bellis in first half:
Acc Passes: 39 (89%)
Impressive debut from the 17 year old centre-back! pic.twitter.com/kG2h9sOwmK
— City Chief (@City_Chief) September 24, 2019
Harwood-Bellis finished the match with a 93% pass completion rate, finding a team-mate with 84 of his 90 attempted passes, while his total of 94 touches was surpassed only by centre-back partner Eric Garcia. [via WhoScored.com]
The 17-year-old also won three aerial duels on the night, the joint-most of anyone in the game, and made one interception and two clearances. [via WhoScored.com]
His performance won high praise from Manchester Evening News reporter Stuart Brennan, who gave him an eight rating and said that “a terrific first touch and a couple of powerful headers showed both facets of his game”, highlighting his “terrific composure for a 17-year-old defender”.
These Manchester City fans on Twitter were also full of praise for Harwood-Bellis, with some comparing him to the club’s former defender Vincent Kompany:
Reminds me of kompany the way he moves on and off the ball.
— jonny MCFC (@joncdon) September 24, 2019
He is a fantastic player
— Majid (@Majid11646322) September 24, 2019
— Awudu Jafar (@JafarAwudu) September 24, 2019
What a CB .. he is very strong
— Said AlSaeedi (@Engsaid_mohd) September 24, 2019
He needs to be included in matchday squads now!
— Rajandeep Singh (@Rajandeep07) September 25, 2019
He was a stud during pre season in Asia i don’t know why this is a suprise, i paid close attention to him and he was lights out
— Venom (@venomkb24) September 24, 2019
How did you rate Harwood-Bellis on his debut and can you see him getting further opportunities with Manchester City this season? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
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