Two of Manchester City’s summer signings are in line to make their Premier League debuts against West Ham on Saturday.
BBC reported that Rodri and Joao Cancelo could both start for Pep Guardiola’s side as they begin the defence of their title with a trip to London Stadium tomorrow lunchtime.
Rodri became the club’s record signing when he joined from Atletico Madrid for £62.6m in early July, while Cancelo completed his move from Juventus to Manchester City on Wednesday in a deal which saw Danilo going the opposite way and the English side also paid a further £27.4m.
The Spain international showed an early glimpse of what he can offer to Manchester City in last weekend’s Community Shield penalty shoot-out win against Liverpool.
The central midfielder completed 57 of his 62 passes last Sunday, a 92% success rate which was bettered by only three players in that game – and two of those were late substitutes. Also, he had the highest figures for any Manchester City player both for passes attempted and passes completed.
If he maintains that passing accuracy standard throughout the season, he should be a quality addition to Guardiola’s side, as only four of their players recorded a higher passing success rate than 92% in 2018/19.
From central midfield, he won two aerial duels and two tackles in the game, suggesting that he can gain the upper hand in important battles in the middle of the park.
He will hope to emulate the aerial duels average of fellow central midfielder Fernandinho, who won 2.6 per game in 2018/19, while the Brazil midfielder won an average of two tackles per match last term, the same figure that Rodri managed against Liverpool.
Cancelo is in line to make his first appearance for his new club tomorrow and, if he does, Manchester City can look forward to having a right-back with an innate knack for getting forward.
The Portugal international recorded match averages of 2.4 dribbles, one cross and 1.4 key passes last season for Juventus.
Rodri’s composed and industrious performance against Liverpool last weekend has understandably put him in a strong position to start against West Ham tomorrow.
Cancelo may face a battle with Walker for the right-back berth, given the latter’s goal-line clearing heroics in the Community Shield, but Guardiola could be eager to give the new arrival a chance to prove his worth after securing his signature during the week.
Manchester City fans, would you like to see both Rodri and Cancelo starting against West Ham? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
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