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Sokol: Muric battle will make City better

SOKOL: City's goalkeeper has enjoyed his time in Manchester City colours so far

SOKOL: City's goalkeeper has enjoyed his time in Manchester City colours so far

Manchester City U18s goalkeeper Pawel Sokol expects a great battle for the number one shirt in Lee Carsley’s side now that Arijanet Muric has returned to fitness.

Sokol, who joined City in August 2016, has been in the side since Muric’s injury in the victory at Newcastle United in October.

However, with Muric returning to fitness in the new year, Sokol has fierce competition for his starting role – starting with the visit of Sunderland on Saturday.

The 16-year-old believes the excellent working relationship between him and Muric is improving the standards of both goalkeepers.

He said: “Me and Aro have a good friendship and he has helped me a lot. Aro is a very good person and now we’re training together, we are both helping each other out as much as we can.

“When I came here I didn’t think I would be playing so soon because Aro was doing very well and I needed time to learn. Then Aro got injured and I was in the team very quickly.

“The first match I was probably a little nervous and every game I’m getting more confident and getting better. All the staff have helped me and the players want to help me a lot.”

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“Now Aro has come back, the coach will choose who plays. I’ve trained to the same level as before and Aro is working hard to be where he was when he got the injury. Now, all we can do is wait and see who gets picked on Saturday.”

Lee Carsley’s unbeaten U18s haven’t played since their 5-2 victory over Stoke City on 21 December but Sokol doesn’t expect there to be much rustiness when they line-up at the City Football Academy on Saturday morning.

“When we came back on the Monday after our Christmas break it was hard but now we’re back to normal. I feel good, the team are ready and we want to continue our great record for as long as possible,” he said.

Want to keep up with Manchester City v Sunderland in the U18 Premier League? We'll have all the latest on mancity.com and on Twitter, @ManCityAcademy.

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