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Gossip: Gundogan focus, Jesus advice

FITNESS ADVICE: Gabriel Jesus and compatriot Neymar

FITNESS ADVICE: Gabriel Jesus and compatriot Neymar

Friday's media round-up brings us analysis of an in-form City midfielder, a fitness bulletin - plus how Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus has been giving advice to compatriot Neymar...

First to Ilkay Gundogan, who has made an impressive 37 appearances in all competitions this season, and caught the eye of ESPN columnist David Mooney.

Mooney writes: "He seems like the perfect midfielder for a Guardiola style team. He's got the vision and skill to execute a variety of passes, but even without the ball he's shown the awareness the manager wants his players to have to cut out the space and win possession back quickly. Watch as City go hunting in packs when an attack breaks down and it's usually Gundogan who is orchestrating the press.

"It may be Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling or Sergio Aguero doing the running and chasing, but it's often Gundogan who emerges with the ball, ready to play one of his teammates into the empty space that's been left."

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Gundogan's form has helped soften the blow of Fernandinho's absence, though our training gallery from Thursday confirmed the Brazilian dynamo is closing on a return.

The MEN's City reporter Stuart Brennan notes that the Blues' squad is returning to full strength ahead of Monday's game at Stoke.

"Sterling, also out with a hamstring injury, is another expected to be back in contention for the trip to Staffordshire," reports Brennan.

"Brazil midfield star Fernandinho limped out of the Carabao Cup final with a hamstring problem nearly a fortnight ago, and has since missed big league wins over Arsenal and Chelsea, and the Champions League defeat by Basel.

"The Blues have made light of the absence of a player who has been key for them this season, by going on to beat the Gunners in the final and then picking up six points from two league games.

"But with the sharp end of the season approaching, having him and Silva back in harness is a huge plus."

Continuing the Brazilian theme a number of papers carry words from City striker Gabriel Jesus following his return to fitness - and how he has been passing advice to his compatriot Neymar after the PSG man fractured his foot.

The Daily Mail's Jack Gaughan reports: "He (Jesus) revealed Brazil team-mate Neymar has asked for advice about dealing with the rehabilitation after suffering a falling victim to a similar injury last month.

"'He sent me a message and asked about the problem,' Jesus added. 'I explained to him how I felt, how the recovery was. He has already had the operation, is recovering and is starting to walk again.'"

That's all for today - we'll be back same time, same place on Saturday!

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