Of course Fernandinho just signed a new contract so this section is now totally irrelevant but if I had written this before the new deal my response would still have been the same.
His leadership within the team is invaluable, he is a true captain. Someone who doesn’t necessarily play every game and has aged even more since last year, I doubt their game-to-game influence will increase on the pitch, but still bring the required leadership into the locker room.
He’s, understandably, still the master of the tactical foul and Rodri seems to be showing the makings of picking up that particular trait. However, it is the possibility of him taking under his wing the highly rated Roméo Lavia, who will join the first team in training this season, that fascinates me a lot.
We’ve all invested in kids who just haven’t been on the first team before, and there’s a good chance we’ll do the same again. But let me dream.
Give him a statue: TO KEEP
READ MORE: How Man City aim to raise over £ 100million from player sales this summer
READ MORE: Man City eyes contract extension following player’s recent comments
Rodri receives a lot of stick from some corners of the world supporting City and my personal opinion is that, more than anything else, it’s simply because he’s not Fernandinho.
We’re used to having the best defensive midfielder in the league, a player who can combine N’Golo Kante’s pure physique with the shit of Pepe and the playing skills of, finally, Rodri.
Rodri was obviously hired to play with a different kind of system and it’s safe to say his first season at the club was not the ideal scenario for him to come out on the squad, given the chaotic defensive displays. that were taking place behind him. .
Last season, with Ruben Dias and John Stones locking in the defense, he looked a lot more confident and a lot more capable of doing what his role really is – passing the ball from defense to attack. There are always frustrations with how quickly (or slowly) he can sometimes do it, but he’s so calm with the ball that he can often feel like he’s not even aware of it. that there is a player nearby.
Due to the nature of the position he plays and his lack of physical mobility, he can often feel that when he plays a bad game it completely exposes the defense, so it is much more obvious that he is playing a bad game. plays badly more than the others. Despite this, I think these days are actually a lot less frequent than many think.
I love it: TO KEEP
Silky Ilkay has been one of the bright lights of the season. Serious contender for Player of the Season, both for City and for the Premier League, he has taken his game to a whole new level that we have never seen before at City or Dortmund, finding himself able to add big goals in his game.
Our own Deutsche Fußballmeister is probably the second best midfielder in the league right now in terms of both his ability to influence games and now his ability to add tough numbers to his game. It’s a shame he’s found that form when he’s only a few months away from being 31, because if he was in his mid-twenties, we’d be settled for the next five or six years.
There were discussions, before it emerged that Barcelona’s finances are about as viable as your average college student’s bank account, having dug so deep into their overdraft and asked their parents for loans too. of times to be able to go back and do it again, that Gündoğan could be on his way to the Catalan club.
To be fair, if I was played as one of 8 all season, registering the best career numbers in the process, and then was relegated to 6 for the second time this season only in of the Champions League final, which I then lost, I would probably put away the fish and chips for La Rambla the best tapas too.
He also has beautiful thick hair. Even if he was a bad footballer, it would make me say: TO KEEP
READ MORE: Raheem Sterling in talks with Man United defender over home
READ MORE: Harry Kane could refuse to train with Tottenham to force City to move
Kevin De Bruyne
Just like Dias, absolutely nothing to say about this one: TO KEEP
This is one of the most difficult.
It has emerged since the end of the season that Bernardo isn’t quite the happy fellow we all think he is. He has apparently been feeling that way for some time, with reports suggesting he made a deal to join Barcelona last season before deciding to hold Messi hostage for another year in his place.
Bernardo’s misfortune is probably due to several things. Shortly before the Champions League final he was interviewed, in which he said playing in different positions and being asked to play different roles in each game kept him from finding rhythm in his game.
He obviously had Benjamin Mendy’s tweet issues last season and anyone who follows Bernardo on social media knows he enjoys spending his free time in Lisbon with family, friends and the sun. Being in Manchester for 18 months, playing tireless football twice a week and barely having a break, has probably mentally exhausted more players than we realize.
That says a lot about the Bernardo kind of man, is that if you were just about his performance and pace of work, you would have absolutely no idea that was the case. His only problem is that Barcelona, as previously discussed, are absolutely in the mud right now to the point where they currently cannot afford to re-sign Messi on a new deal, let alone spend the £ 60million + necessary to get Bernardo on board, or pay his wages.
Having said that, if there is a club that is willing to pay whatever we ask of him, then it’s probably time to let him go. He’s been a good servant to us though, if we’re honest, in terms of outstanding seasons he only had one in 2018/19 with two of the remaining four being solid and the other being downright bad.
With a heavy heart, I must say: TO SELL
In the next and final part, we move on to the team forwards, coming soon!
You can follow Joe on Twitter here: @joeutters
Follow us on Twitter for live updates: @City_Xtra