Pep’s pledge, the hare and the tortoise and one of England’s greatest bowlers heading for the Etihad… welcome to Thursday morning’s Media Watch.

So, only one place to begin and that’s with the widely publicised comments of Pep Guardiola from a serialised extract from a new book due out later this month – and it will be music to the ears of all City fans...

READ: CITY DNA: From Saab to Etihad

READ: CITY DNA: The Georgian Genius

Pep’s Pledge

Sport Bible: Foden not for sale – even for £500m

Jack Kenmare writes: “Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has claimed Phil Foden is the one player at the club who will not be sold - not even for a world record fee of €500 million.

“The 19-year-old midfielder, who is a lifelong City supporter, signed a long-term contract extension at the end of last year.

“He may not get many first team minutes but it's clear Guardiola holds the youngster in high regard.

‘We didn't give Foden a new contract by accident,’ Guardiola said in an extract from a new book titled: 'Pep's City: The Making of a Superteam'.

‘He is the only player that can't be sold under any circumstances - the only one. Not even for 500m.

‘Phil's going nowhere - Phil IS City. We won't be signing anyone else for that position.’

 


                        MY PEOPLE: Phil has a bright future
MY PEOPLE: Phil has a bright future

 


Title race

Football Fancast: A ‘'Hare and the Tortoise' scenario?

Vijievan Jeevathayalan writes: “But whilst the signs appear to be against them, City do have one thing the Reds do not. Experience. The know-how of grinding your way for the full 38 games and digging out victories in the most difficult of times.

“Whilst Jurgen Klopp ended his own personal trophy hoodoo at Anfield by clinching the Champions League last season, their best efforts at winning their first league title in more than a couple of decades has fallen short.

“Despite the departure of Vincent Kompany, City boast a squall full of talent who have played major roles in their back-to-back Premier League triumphs. Whether it’s players in the first-team like Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero, or less high-profile players like Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko, the Etihad side are brimming with title-winning experience.”

 


                        SPECIAL GROUP: City have the know-how
SPECIAL GROUP: City have the know-how

 


Daily Mail: Rafa’s warning

Tom Farmery writes: "Rafa Benitez has warned Manchester City that they can't make 'too many more mistakes' if they expect to challenge for the Premier League title this season.

‘It has led former Liverpool manager Benitez to conclude that Pep Guardiola's side can't afford many more mistakes if they are to win a third consecutive season - even if it is too early to crown the champions in October.

'It you look at the table Liverpool has a great advantage at the moment, it is too early to tell much from that, but Manchester City can’t make too many mistakes, or the pressure might become too much,' he wrote on his official website.

'Especially as later they will start thinking about the Champions League and lose their focus on the Premier League which obviously would be good for Liverpool.'

 

And finally…

It's not often that we get chance to put words from cricket bible Wisden in Media Watch, so this was too good an opportunity to turn down...

Wisden: Jimmy Anderson heading for the Etihad

“James Anderson is set to train with Premier League football club Manchester City in a bid to recover from his calf injury and be fit in time for England’s upcoming tour of South Africa.

“Anderson’s right calf has been constantly troubling him for the last four months, but the pacer will now head to the Etihad stadium, Manchester City’s home, with the intent to recover for the Boxing Day Test in Centurion.

‘[Anderson] will be hoping to use the world-class facilities at the Etihad Campus with the England Cricket sports science team over the next two months, leading into the South Africa tour, which starts in December,’ an ECB spokesman said, according to Reuters.”

 


                        ENGLAND LEGEND: Jimmy Anderson
ENGLAND LEGEND: Jimmy Anderson