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Media Watch: Praise for Pep's boy Blues

SHINING BRIGHT: Manchester City's young players won extensive praise for their performances during the Club's pre-season tour to America

SHINING BRIGHT: Manchester City's young players won extensive praise for their performances during the Club's pre-season tour to America

This morning’s media round-up is dominated by reflections on City’s pre-season tour to the United States which garnered unanimous praise for the impact of Pep Guardiola’s young squad.

With the bulk of the Club’s established first-team squad still on their post World Cup break, many of City’s younger players were handed their big opportunity in the States and they didn’t disappoint.

The squad rounded off an excellent trip with a superb 3-2 win over over Bayern Munich in Saturday’s final encounter in Miami and according to the Daily Telegraph, the impact of Guardiola’s young charges offered an exciting insight into the future.

Steve Brenner wrote: “Pre-season matches normally see wildly differing starting XI’s yet Guardiola has kept faith with the bulk of his young and mostly inexperienced squad. Eight of his line-up which started this match have begun all three games. 

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“Youngster Phil Foden was involved throughout and it was the England Under-17 World Cup winner whose shot was parried for City’s equalizing goal from Lukas Nmecha at the start of the second half.

“German-born Lukas Nmecha’s work rate would have pleased his Spanish coach while there were also decent showings from Oleksandr Zinchenko and Brahim Diaz while there was also a first City appearance for 17 year-old Spanish attacking midfielder Adrian Bernabe.

"It's been a joy working with these young players," said the City manager afterwards. "They are so hungry. I want to say thank you to them."

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Match highlights: Bayern Munich 2 City 3

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"Phil Foden was excellent," he added. "He never gives up and I like that."

There were equally warm words over on the BBC Sport website as they reflected on a memorable 10-day trip.

According to the Beeb: “This was a night when Guardiola gave City's fans a glimpse into the future.

“The Spaniard fielded a side sprinkled with teenagers and, after falling 2-0 behind to a strong Bayern team boasting four Champions League winners, showed tremendous character and spirit to win.

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“Eighteen-year-old Spanish forward Brahim Diaz caught the eye with a lively attacking display which he came close to capping with a goal in the 36th minute.

Luke Bolton, 18, also showed promise with a string of attacking runs down the right, while it was England Under-17 world champion Phil Foden's shot which Ulreich spilled and allowed Lukas Nmecha to score.

Meanwhile, Bernardo Silva's winner came courtesy of a pass by 17-year-old substitute Adrian Bernabe.

The Manchester Evening News were also full of praise for the way Guardiola and hs young players went about their work across the pond.

And according to Simon Bajkowski, the manager has now challenged his young charges to continue to follow the impressive example they have set over the past week or so.




Two-goal Bernardo hails City's teen stars

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He wrote: “After seeing some rise to the challenge with impressive performances against Liverpool and Bayern Munich, the pressure is back on the senior players to prove their commitment to the cause.

"It will be good for them for the future but they know that I always play the guys who run," Guardiola said of his young charges.

"We can help them to understand the game after but the guys who don't run are not going to play, be it World Cup or no World Cup.

"That is what I like the most as a manager, seeing my players fight and play like a fourth division team. In my career, that detail speaks for itself." 

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The only downside to a superb tour was the injury sustained by summer signing Riyad Mahrez early on during the Bayern victory.

The Daily Mail reported that the attacking winger, who joined the club from Leicester City earlier this month, had to be helped off the field early in the first half and arrived back in Manchester on Sunday wearing a protective boot.

According to Jack Gaughan: “Pep Guardiola faces an anxious wait to see whether his record-signing will be fit for the start of the season.

“The City boss will know more after the winger is further assessed by medical staff following their return from the pre-season tour of America.

“The club's record signing picked up an ankle problem five minutes into the match in Miami and was unable to run it off, collapsing to the pitch in agony.

“With just one week until the new season starts for City, the club are hoping the injury is not as bad as it first appeared.

'I don't know,' Pep Guardiola said when asked about the extent of the issue. I wasn't in the locker room. It was his ankle. We will see, maybe it is not a problem.”

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