Interviews

Fernandinho still has a vital role to play, says Guardiola

Pep Guardiola says captain Fernandinho will have a key role to play once again as the season approaches its business end.

Though the 36-year-old’s minutes have been limited this season, whenever called upon the holding midfielder has brought all his vast experience and influence to bear on the City engine room.

And, speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of Tuesday night’s FA Cup fifth round clash at Peterborough, the City manager highlighted the vital role Fernandinho still exerts on the side.

“(I am) More than pleased (with his performances). You know my opinion about Fernandinho,” Guardiola declared.

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“When I arrived he was here and was playing regularly. He’s 36-years-old now, he plays the minutes he has to play and always is positive.

“He struggled in the beginning to find his rhythm but now I feel in the training sessions he is back to his best.

“And with the amount of games we have ahead, we will need him.”

The Brazilian’s current City contract runs out at the end of the season.

But quizzed as to whether he would be in line for another contract extension – or even a potential role worked with the Club’s backroom staff – Pep said a decision on his future would be made at the end of the campaign.

“No. It would be boring… working with us is so boring,” the boss joked.

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“I wish him the best job of his life, not working with us. A decision will be made at end of the season.

“And again, with these kinds of things Txiki (football director Txiki Begiristain) is the boss.”

Play the video to watch Pep’s press conference in full…

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