Man City Opinion: City have struck gold by extending Bernardo’s contract
The 24-year-old Portuguese international, who joined from AS Monaco for a fee of £43 million back in 2017, has established himself as one of Pep Guardiola’s trusted lieutenants in the midfield, helping the Citizens claim one Premier League title and two EFL Cups.
After an impressive season last time around where he helped City win the Premier League title comprehensively, Bernardo has once again hit top gear this term, playing a key role behind his team’s surge to the top of the table.
He has been one of the standout performers for the Citizens this season and has been at the centre of everything that the team has achieved, contributing with 9 goals and 10 assists from 40 appearances in all competitions.
Bernardo has followed the footsteps of his teammates Phil Foden, Aymeric Laporte and Raheem Sterling by committing his long-term future at the Etihad and the extension of his stay should come as a piece of welcome news to the fans.
The 24-year-old has earned plenty of plaudits for his tireless work rate and creativity down the right-hand side of Guardiola’s 4-3-3 and his remarkable feat of running 13.7 km in City’s 2-1 victory over Liverpool in January shows his level of commitment to the club.
Despite boasting of plentiful financial resources, Man City, under the stewardship of Pep Guardiola, have chosen to invest diplomatically and bring in young talents from across the globe to build a strong foundation for the future.
They haven’t spent extravagantly in the transfer window to achieve instant success and that plan has worked wonders for the club and their dominance in the Premier League is a clear sign of the fact that they are heading in the right direction.
To put things into perspective, Bernardo Silva has developed into a world-class player at Man City and the club’s decision to offer him a long-term contract definitely works in accordance to their policy of building a formidable squad for the foreseeable future.
City know exactly how to keep their prized assets at the club and that is something that has helped them build a strong core of first-team players.
With the likes of David Silva and Fernandinho reaching the final phase of their career and Ilkay Gundogan yet to commit his long-term future, the news of Bernardo’s contract extension should be a huge morale booster for the Man City faithful.
There are not many players in the world who can contribute equally to both attack and defence, as well as score goals as Bernardo does.
Speaking of his importance to the first-team, Bernardo is an indispensable component of Guardiola’s attacking and pressing philosophy. He is the one who keeps things ticking in the midfield with his quality on the ball, eye for passes and uncompromised work-rate.
The Portuguese international not only has the ability to link-up with his teammates and contribute to the build-up play but he also gives the opposition plenty to think about with his pace, creativity and vision, whilst also winning the ball back for his team with his determination and enthusiasm.
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Bernardo’s importance to Man City cannot be expressed in words and it is not difficult to see why they have actually struck gold by tying him down to a new contract.
Man City would strike gold by beating Man United to sign this £100m-rated midfield powerhouse – Agreed?
Manchester City Opinion: Why Man City should sign Ruben Neves?
According to last month’s report from the Express, Manchester United are interested in signing Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves.
The Portuguese, 21, moved to Molineux from FC Porto for £15.8m in July 2017 and played a key role in the team’s Championship title triumph last season.
Ruben Neves has been excellent for Wolves in the Premier League as Nuno Espirito Santo’s team lie seventh in the table. And the 21-year-old polished his credentials with a brilliant display in the 2-1 FA Cup quarter-finals victory over Manchester United last week.
With the midfielder making the step up to the Premier League without much fuss, Manchester City should beat their arch-rivals Manchester United to the signature of Neves, who is valued at £100million by Wolves, adds the report.
Manchester City remain in the hunt for quadruple this season after Pep Guardiola’s side produced a remarkable comeback from 2-0 down to win 3-2 against Swansea City in the FA Cup quarter-finals last weekend.
The win at Swansea demonstrated City’s squad depth, with the likes of Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling coming off the bench to guide Guardiola’s men into the semi-finals of the FA Cup.
The Cityzens have an embarrassment of attacking riches in their squad but come summer, Guardiola should solidify his midfield options by bringing in a replacement for Fernandinho.
Fernandinho is the heartbeat of this City team but he is set to turn 34 in May. Hence, the Brazilian will need a replacement soon and Ruben Neves could be the solution to Guardiola’s long-standing concern.
Neves plays the role of an anchor in Nuno’s system at Wolves and excels in setting up attacks and breaking the opposition’s play from the base of the midfield. He is fantastic in intercepting play with his tacking and ball-retention skills, whilst possessing the ability to pick a pass.
The Portuguese midfielder is blessed with a sublime range of passing, something very few midfielders have in and around his age group across Europe.
The 21-year-old is a tenacious customer in the middle of the park and an excellent long-range shooter. He is a reliable free-kick taker and could beat his opponents from a long distance.
A wonderful passer of the ball, the technically-gifted Portuguese has what it takes to replace Fernandinho on the long run for the defending Premier League champions.
Replacing Fernandinho, however, has proven to be an extremely hard task, irrelevant of how much money Guardiola has at his disposal. Neves could finally be the man City need despite having a lot of room to improve.
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Neves is just 21 and if
Man City going all out to sign this £40m-rated goal machine would be a stunning move by Guardiola
Manchester City Opinion: Why Luka Jovic will be a brilliant fit for Man City?
The Serbian, 21, joined Frankfurt from Benfica on a two-year loan deal in the summer of 2017 and his imperious form this season is set to see the German club trigger an option to make the move a permanent one for just £5.3million.
Jovic has been in sensational form in the Bundesliga, scoring 22 goals in 35 appearances and has attracted the attention of Manchester City. The main question arises—should Pep Guardiola’s City pay £40million to sign the 21-year-old Serbian in the summer?
Without a shadow of doubt, yes! Manchester City have arguably the best striker across Europe in Sergio Aguero. Aguero is absolutely pivotal for City, adapting to the demands of Guardiola and making himself indispensable.
The Argentine star is having one of the finest seasons of his career to date and has now scored 25+ goals in all competitions, a feat he has achieved 7 times in his last 8 seasons.
Despite being used almost in every game this season, Aguero has shown no signs of fatigue. In fact, that has allowed him to get better and stronger, with the Argentinean having long won the battle with Gabriel Jesus to lead the line.
But Aguero is set to turn 31 in June and even though the striker is going brilliant at the moment, Guardiola should start planning for Aguero’s future from now on. City have Jesus in their ranks but more firepower up front is required if Guardiola is to continue his domination in the Premier League.
That said, Jovic has all the attributes to take the Premier League by storm and could be a smash hit at City.
Jovic has continued to establish himself as one of the most prolific forwards in Europe this season. He has the ability to play all over the front but is most comfortable operating as a no.9.
His combination speed, power, dribbling skills and composure in front of goal make him such an exciting player. He is excellent in creating space for himself between the midfielders and the defenders before utilizing that space to deadly effect.
Jovic is a natural goal-scorer and has mightily impressed in domestic as well as European competitions. Interest from City makes sense as the Serbian represents a long-term replacement for Aguero as well as immediate competition for places.
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Under the watchful eyes of Guardiola, the 21-year-old can absolutely become one of the best strikers in the world in the coming years. Hence, City shouldn’t hesitate in splashing the cash for signing Jovic.
Man City signing this 4-time capped international midfielder would be Guardiola’s best bet to replace Fernandinho
Manchester City Opinion: Why City should break their bank to sign Rodri?
Fernandinho is indispensable for Manchester City and there’s no player in the current squad that comes close to replacing him. Ilkay Gundogan is a fantastic player and has done well in the absence of Fernandinho but he isn’t the Brazilian, who has a habit of picking opponents’ pockets, intercepting their play and launching attacks from the base of the midfield.
Guardiola has already witnessed how crucial Fernandinho is when City had their dip earlier in the season. Defeats to Crystal Palace and Leicester City in quick succession in the absence of Fernandinho was an eye-opener for Guardiola, with the City manager having no like for like replacement for the Brazilian defensive midfielder.
It is a position City should strengthen this summer despite Fernandinho showing no signs of slowing down. Yet, Guardiola knows he needs more options in the position and should target Atletico Madrid star Rodri in the summer.
Rodri, 22, joined Atletico Madrid from Villarreal last summer and has quickly settled in the team under Diego Simeone. The Spaniard has nailed down a starting berth at Atletico, managing 24 league appearances so far whilst being heavily involved in the Champions League.
On first glance, there could not be a more different player to Fernandinho than Rodri, although the latter is more strong and powerful. Defensively, Rodri possesses excellent positioning and knows how to use his physicality to break up opposition attacks. He is an impeccable reader of the game and has the ability to pick the right pass.
The four-cap Spanish international is a classy operator of the ball with maturity beyond his years. His biggest strengths lie in recovering the ball and quickly releasing it to one of his teammates but one cannot overlook his agility in spite of standing 6ft 3in tall.
Rodri stays focused and likes to have the ball at his feet which enables him to pick a pass to his teammates at Atletico. He offers everything that Guardiola likes in a midfielder—calm, composure, technicality, poise, urgency and positional awareness.
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The Spanish midfielder certainly seems to have the skills and the quality on the ball required to play the role for City, but at only 22 he naturally seems to have a way to go before he can truly control games.
Rodri would make a fantastic deputy to the ageing Fernandinho and could solve City’s midfield conundrum for the next decade.
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