Men's Team

Foden is a joy to watch, says Peter Barnes

Peter Barnes believes there is even more to come from newly crowned Premier League Young Player of the Season Phil Foden – which means good news for both City and England.

After a magnificent 2020/21 campaign at Club level, the attacking City midfielder is now a important part of the England squad seeking success at the European Championships which get underway next weekend.

Foden was a key component of the City squad which regained the Premier League title, retained the Carabao Cup for a fourth successive season and reached a first-ever Champions League final.

The 21-year-old’s own huge impact was further recognised earlier today when he was named as the 2020/21 Premier League Young Player of the Season.


And for his part, former City winger Barnes believes Foden is only going to go from strength to strength over the next few years.

“Is there much more to come from Phil? Absolutely!,” Barnes asserted.

“Obviously, we had the great loss at the end of last season of David Silva who was one of my favourite players, but Phil is now playing with such confidence.

“He has been playing more and more games, scoring goals, getting stronger, and is so direct.

“It has been great to see the amount of game time that Phil got this season because I think he deserves those opportunities and deserved his place in the side.

“And looking at the international picture, it's look very rosy for England's midfield players thanks to players like Phil.

“I think in players like Phil, England have now got players with great vision and who are good on the ball and that’s just what we needed.

“It’s so good for England that we have those sorts of players that when they play together they have a good understanding.


“We need those players in the team to win games.”

In his mesmerising dribbling ability, eye for goal and willingness to take on the opposition, there are uncanny echoes of Barnes himself in Foden.

Named PFA Young Player of the Year in 1976 and an England regular to boot, Barnes was an integral part of the exciting City side of the mid to late 1970s assembled by Tony Book.

And he says watching Foden’s licence to thrill has provided a thread linking the City side of 2021 with Barnes' side of the mid-70s.

“Seeing Phil now in this City team he reminds me a bit of myself because he’s got such great feet and a wonderful left foot,” Barnes added.

“Phil makes things happen. Fans like to see someone pick the ball up and dribble and go at the opposition.


“That was my strength and Phil is very similar to me in that regard.

“When he picks the ball up Phil’s not frightened of running at people and he’s not afraid to have a shot at goal.

“All I thought of doing when I was playing was to pick up the ball and just run at the opposition.

“Phil's just fantastic to watch.”

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