Phil Foden is next up as we continue to profile the performances of our 2018/19 Fourmidables…
Squad number: 47
Total appearances: 26
Total goals: 7
Total assists: 2
Premier League appearances: 23
Premier League goals: 1
Total Premier League passes: 231
Relief poured out of the Etihad Stadium when Michael Oliver’s whistle called time on a tense, tough game against Tottenham Hotspur in April.
There was elation too, of course, for this was a huge win in the season and it was sealed thanks to the Stockport-born, Academy graduate.
It was a wonderful moment for Foden, who met Sergio Aguero’s headed pass with a diving header of his own to score his first Premier League goal, which kept his boyhood club on course to win back to back titles.
In a game in which City’s play was resilient rather than resplendent, Foden yet again evidence his precocious talent and showed a willingness to get on the ball and impact a game of huge significance.
That Pep Guardiola thrust him into the starting XI for a game of such magnitude added gloss to the goal and the result.
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It was yet another sign that the youngster’s role in the side is gradually increasing and he grasped the opportunity with both hands.
Aware of the promise at his disposal, Guardiola has carefully managed Foden’s progress over the past two seasons.
If 2017/18 was his proper introduction to the first-team environment, 2018/19 was the campaign in which the 19-year-old got his first real taste of senior action.
There was no involvement with the EDS, as Foden made 26 appearances and 11 starts, 16 and eight more than in the previous campaign.
The midfielder took full advantage of the increased game time to show he can more than hold his own in the illustrious playing company he keeps.
There were a number of assured displays, noticeably against Chelsea in the Community Shield, where he provided an assist, as well as the goal scoring display against Spurs.
A long-term contract extension was signed in December, which was a credit to his development and another sign of the faith Guardiola has in his potential.
He may still be young and there is further development to come, but the manager certainly trusts that the youngster can perform at senior level and Foden more than coped with the increased responsibility, which looks as if it will only grow from here on out.