The Spaniard joined at the start of July to add defensive steel in midfield and his new team-mate thinks the youngster’s attributes will make the Premier League champions even better this season.
Rodri’s arrival provides an additional option alongside Fernandinho in the midfield anchor role and though he’s only played three pre-season games, Bernardo has already seen enough quality to feel the 23-year-old will prove a valuable member of the team.
READ | Foden proud of young charges
“He’s only just arrived but I hope he can improve our squad,” he said.
“He had a fantastic season with Atletico and it’s good to have a player in that position that we lacked. Fernandinho was the only one and then Gundogan was fantastic when he played there.
“It’s good to have a more complete squad and I hope he can improve us even more.”
Having returned to the City Football Academy on 12 July, Bernardo is now two weeks into his pre-season preparations.
The Portuguese midfielder has featured in all three friendlies so far and looked particularly lively in the first half against Kitchee, though he says there is still work to be done for him to return to the level of fitness that produced such tireless displays in the 2018/19 campaign.
“Not yet,” he said when asked if he was close to peak condition.
“We just arrived a week ago, but I will try to get back to my best.
“But it’s normal – each pre-season it takes two, three weeks, depending on the season, but I am working hard to try and get back to my best and that’s what I will try to do.”
Meanwhile, the playmaker also revealed Rodri isn’t the only new addition to impress him on our tour of Asia.
City wore our new PUMA away kit for the first time against Kitchee and Bernardo is a big fan.
“I like the shirts a lot,” he added.
“The black one is very nice. I’m looking forward to this season and trying to win some trophies in these shirts.”