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Unsung Hero: Manchester City’s Rodri continues impressive start to life at the Etihad

Unsung Hero: Manchester City’s Rodri continues impressive start to life at the Etihad - Manchester City

Manchester City temporarily went top of the Premier League on Saturday following their 4-0 win over Brighton at the Etihad Stadium.

The champions needed only 68 seconds to get off the mark against the Seagulls, with Kevin De Bruyne finishing past Matt Ryan from close range. [via Sky Sports]

Two goals in a 13-minute spell either side of half-time from Sergio Aguero extended Manchester City’s lead, the first a clinical end to a sumptuous team move and the second a beautifully curled strike into the top corner of the Brighton net. [via Sky Sports]

Aguero then turned provider for the fourth goal of the afternoon, supplying the assist for Bernardo Silva’s goal only 17 seconds after the Portugal winger came on as a late substitute. [via Sky Sports]

A first home win of the season for Pep Guardiola’s side put them top of the table for a couple of hours until Liverpool reclaimed first place with victory at Burnley later on Saturday.

Manchester City have now scored 14 goals in the Premier League after just four matches, an average of 3.5 goals per game.

While the likes of Aguero keep the scoreboard operators busy, the intelligence of summer signing Rodri in midfield has also been central to the champions’ solid start to the campaign.

The 23-year-old has only played five matches so far for his new club since joining from Atletico Madrid two months ago, but he has not taken long to attract gushing praise from numerous quarters.

ESPN writer James Capps gave Rodri a seven rating for his performance on Saturday, saying that he “looks like he has been playing in this Manchester City side for years, and his good work at the base of the midfield allowed the likes of David Silva and De Bruyne to really express themselves”.

David Crook of awarded him an eight rating and said: “Rodri always seems to appear not where the ball was – but where it is next”.

Rodri completed 66 of his 69 passes against Brighton, an accuracy rate of 95.7%, and won six tackles on the day, by far the most of any Manchester City player. He had 82 touches of the ball, the second most for Guardiola’s side after Oleksandr Zinchenko. [via]

Rodri may have cost Manchester City a club record £62.6m in the summer, but his astute reading of the game and intelligent use of the ball has helped him to settle in nicely to life at the Etihad straight away.

Manchester City fans, what have you made of Rodri’s displays at the club so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

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Article title: Unsung Hero: Manchester City’s Rodri continues impressive start to life at the Etihad

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