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Guardiola: Fernandinho is a gift

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has described Fernandhiho as 'a gift' after the midfielder's superb start to the season for the Blues.

The Brazilian was a key figure in last season’s record-breaking campaign and has started the new season in the same commanding vein, most recently in Saturday's 2-1 home win over Newcastle.

And as he looked ahead to the resumption of action following the current international break, Guardiola said he was in no doubt his contribution will be equally crucially this time round.

“He is a gift, to have him. He is a guy who will have minutes to rest,” said the City manager.

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“For now, it’s no problem because we play one game a week. He is so important. Last season he was a key player for us.”

Meanwhile, Guardiola is confident that City will kick-on and further improve once the squad reassembles after the international hiatus.

The reigning Premier League champions rounded off the first four games of the new Premier League season with a hard-fought 2-1 win over the Magpies at the Etihad.

ACTION SHOT: That stunning goal.



City 2-1 Newcastle: Brief highlights

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Having accrued 10 points from a possible 12, City currently lie two points behind the leaders.

However, given the demands of the World Cup finals over the summer and the subsequent delayed return to training for the bulk of his squad, Guardiola says he is more than happy with where his side are.

And he is adamant that City will only get better as we head into the busy Autumn schedule.

“We have the same points as last season at this stage, but our opponents have more. We knew that (would happen),” said Guardiola.

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“I am so surprised that after what happened last season, the World Cup, we come back and you never know.

 “We beat Chelsea, played away at two tough stadiums, and in general we were better than all four teams we have played. Created more chances and conceded fewer. In all the games and Community Shield. We will improve, too.

“After the World Cup, it’s impossible to be in best condition. We need time. After international break we will start every three games having a game. We start again. So far, I am delighted with the points and the way we play.

“We will improve. I don’t have doubts about that.”

Men's Team

Talking points: Sterling reaches new level

Media Watch

Media heap praise on Sterling and Walker

MEDIA WATCH: Your Sunday media round-up!

It’s your Sunday media round-up!

After our 2-1 win over Newcastle, the media have heaped praise on Raheem Sterling for his opener and Kyle Walker’s superb first City goal.

Men's Team

Guardiola's praise for ton-up Sterling

BOSS: Pep Guardiola gives instruction from the sideline.

Pep Guardiola hailed the all-round display of Raheem Sterling after the Manchester City winger marked his 100th Premier League appearance for the Club by opening the scoring in the 2-1 win over Newcastle.

Manchester City manager's verdict on Premier League victory over Newcastle United