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Man City’s star forward hung out to dry by Pep

Guardiola blames long-serving Man City star for the two points dropped against Spurs.

Despite Sergio Aguero putting his team 2-1 ahead against Tottenham Hotspur, Guardiola was more concerned with his positioning during the two Spurs goals.

Guardiola has favoured Gabriel Jesus so far this season. Featuring him in the Community Shield where Aguero did not and starting him on the opening day against West Ham.

Aguero’s first start of the 19/20 season came in the 2-2 draw against Spurs that saw himself and his manager have a verbal altercation after being subbed off for Jesus. Guardiola then went on to blame the lost points on their prolific Argentinian striker.

Gabriel Jesus had a last-minute goal cancelled due to a VAR decision. Laporte appeared to use a hand during the build-up of the play. Had Jesus’ goal stood, both he and Aguero would be two for two in the Premier League. Jesus could feature much more heavily after showing evidence that he can match Aguero, and after Guardiola has publicly blamed the Argentine for the draw.

Gabriel Jesus or Sergio Aguero?

Last season, Gabriel Jesus scored 21 goals and got 6 assists in 47 appearances for the club. These are the statistics for a very good striker. But Sergio Aguero is better than very good. Aguero got 32 goals and 10 assists in 46 appearances.

Aguero, at 31, is still pivotal to Man City’s success. A fall out between himself and the manager could result in him being featured much less often this season. This would potentially result in the Blues losing 20 goals in all competitions this season.

However, with the determination of Jesus to overtake Aguero and Raheem Sterling becoming a very prolific finisher, the goals they lose from Aguero could be made up by their other talents.

The team selection in the near future will reveal the severity of Guardiola’s argument with Aguero and his displeasure with his positioning.

Loan watch: Two Man City youngster to keep an eye on

Man City currently have twelve players out on loan. Today, The Football Manc Cave will report on two prolific youngsters who have a strong shot at making it to the Premier League winner’s starting eleven.

Since Manchester City was gifted ‘blank-cheque’ status in 2008, their planning for the future has been absolutely spot on. The club has gradually improved their squad before settling on the perfect group to perform under Pep Guardiola before appointing him.

The young players out on loan are there because they are seen as part of the plans of Man City’s future. Meaning that you could see the names Sandler and Ilic in the Premier League in the years to come.

Man Utd is renown for producing their own talent. This is currently unmatched by Man City as they tend to purchase young talent. Philippe Sandler was purchased from Zwolle for around £2.25million and Luka Ilic was purchased from Red Star for a similar price.

City purchased Oleksandr Zinchenko from FK Ufa when he was 20 in 2016 for only £1.8million. He was then loaned to PSV, and now he starts week in, week out for Man City with a market value of £18million.

Could one or both of the following players see the same fate? Let’s see how their loan spells are going for their current clubs…

Philippe Sandler

Sandler, 22, went out on loan this summer to Anderlecht. He followed Man City superstar Vincent Kompany as he ventures on to a player-coach role. Having such an experienced talent alongside him will fast-track his progression and allow him to become the man who fills the hole Kompany left.

Sandler has featured in the first three games for Anderlecht, starting on all three occasions. This shows a good start to his loan as he is being trusted with regular first-team football.

Himself and Kompany in as the centre-back partnership saw two clean sheets in the first two games. But conceded 4 in a 4-2 defeat in Sandler’s third and most recent game with Anderlecht.

Luka Ilic

Ilic, 20, is a Serbian left-footed attacking midfielder. He is in last season of his two-year loan at Breda, who is in the second division of Dutch football,

Ilic’s first season with Breda was in the top tier in Holland. Having only 16 appearances, 2 goals and 3 assists say that the youngster had a tough time.

However, with only two games played in the new season, Ilic has scored twice and assisted once, having his team sat at the top of their division.

Should this form continue, it would demonstrate a resilient youngster who is eager to improve and going back to his parent club with a fantastic reference from his temporary manager at Breda.

Tottenham Hotspurs tactics against Man City show they are ready to challenge to the title, agree?

Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham Hotspur showed their resilience in a dramatic draw against Man City at the Etihad. A draw so impressive, some are considering Spurs title contenders…

When looking at the statistics of the game, it appears as though Spurs went backs to the wall. Man City had 30 shots and 10 on target, compared to Spurs’ 3 shots with 2 on target.

However, Mauricio Pochettino has been hailed an incredible manager and tactician in recent months. Particularly since his display in the Champions League.

Has Pochettino translated his team’s European performances to the Premier League? The game against Man City certainly showed that.

Furthermore, many scratched their heads as Lucas Moura sat on the bench for the first 55 minutes. He came on and scored with his first touch…

Why are Spurs capable of winning of the Premier League this season?

If Pochettino had ignited Spurs’ incredible fight to salvage something from the game and played a role in how clinical his side was. As well as meticulously planting Moura in at the right time, the man could be labelled a genius.

The Tottenham squad consists of Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli, Son Heung-min amongst other top European talents. Most astute managers could get this team in the top four. But Mauricio Pochettino proves time and time again that he is not ‘most managers’.

The result against Man City is the first demonstration that Pochettino can salvage points from teams who should beat them. According to current form and state of the squad, only Man City, Liverpool, Man Utd and Arsenal could go toe-to-toe with Tottenham.

Is Pochettino in the process of learning how to break down the top teams? Do we have a modern Jose Mourinho on our hands?

With the controversial VAR decisions, mass amounts of wasted chances by Man City and lack of chances created for Spurs. There is room for argument that Spurs were lucky in getting a point from the game.

Should Tottenham continue with their flexible tactics depending on their opponent and getting results against the likes of Man City (again), Liverpool, Arsenal and Man Utd. Those aforementioned arguments would be almost void.

‘For Man City, this game wasn’t about VAR, it was about wasted chances’

It hasn’t taken long for VAR to make its mark on the Premier League as both Man City and Tottenham Hotspur experienced. Fans took to Twitter to vent their frustration, here’s what we can gather…

When asked about the consistency of VAR in the Man City v Spurs post-match press conference, Guardiola responded with “ask the VAR guys” in a tone that suggested he was uncertain about the accuracy and consistency of the virtual referee.

Fans, unlike Pep, were able to go full force on their objections, or their support, of VAR.

Man City was toe-to-toe with Spurs in a 2-2 lockdown. A controversial handball against the Citizens detected by VAR prevented the team from scoring in the dying minutes of the game.

For many, VAR is killing the sport we all know and love…

A large concern with VAR was that its accuracy will destroy the conversations, the arguments and the camaraderie of debating a referee’s decisions. As it stands, VAR is failing on that front. Many people find the usage of VAR to be very suspect, and it most certainly stirs up a conversation…

However, similar to a suspect referee decision, the team who benefits from it tend to support…

Opposition fans make a fair argument, pro-VAR. In the Man City v Spurs fixture, Man City had 30 shots with 10 on target. Compared to Spurs’ 3 shots with 2 on target…

It looks like VAR is just another referee that won’t get its feelings hurt by criticism. Fans arguing about VAR is evidence of its lack of inaccuracy, and it most definitely has a long way to go.

2 exciting Man City prospects that you simply need to keep tabs on, could be worth big money

Manchester City has the greatest quality and depth of any side in the Premier League. Even the youngsters are being hailed as future superstars, including two in particular…

Since 2008, Man City have been meticulously planning for the future. Now, in 2019, we’ve seen it paid off.

However, Man City have been purchasing players left, right and centre and have had many a different eleven for the fans to connect with.

This is begging to become less prevalent as Man City spend less and supply their own talent more often.

Jadon Sancho was one who was part of the Man City academy before moving to Germany’s Borussia Dortmund and being hailed a £100million player.

The Football Manc Cave introduces two prolific youngsters that will get Man City tonnes of trophies, cash, or both.

Phil Foden

Foden has been constantly praised by Pep Guardiola and has been referred to as the most talented player the Spanish manager has ever worked with.

Foden is a product of Man City’s youth. Is Guardiola overexaggerating the production of his academy or is Phil Foden going to be the greatest midfield the world has ever seen?

It is yet to be discovered. But the youngster has this season to seal a starting eleven spot as David Silva moves on in less than a year’s time.

Oleksandr Zinchenko

The 22-year-old full-back joined Man City in 2016 for a fee or around £1million.

This may be one of the smartest deals ever made by the club, as the Ukrainian is now seen at left-back on a weekly basis.

Quick, attacking, young full-backs fetch a sweet penny. Should the youngster’s form continue, he could be looking at a big £60million move to a European club in years to come.

2 players need to step up to see Man City ease past Spurs

From one big Manchester/London game to another, Man City face Tottenham Hotspur at the Etihad in the toughest Premier League game so far.

Spurs famously knocked Man City out of the Champions League last season. Can they imitate the same kind of confidence to cause a huge upset in the race for the Premier League title?

The Premier League this season has become very complex, and ponders many questions… Will Man City run away with it? Will Liverpool slip and will Spurs step up? Who will exceed out of Arsenal, Chelsea and Man Utd?

Answers may begin to appear very early in the season, as Spurs face Man City at the Etihad in the second game of the Premier League.

Spurs

Tottenham is now the most highly rated London team as their rivals begin to slip into the realms of the race for fourth place. Spurs’ ultimate goal should now be to win the Premier League. Manager Pochettino is well aware that his squad should not have let 3rd place slip last season. Spurs can comfortably make top 4, so all that’s worth playing for is the Premier League trophy.

This could bring out a very confident, direct and competitive Tottenham Hotspur against Man City.

Pochettino could set up in a defensive and compact manner. Seeing the likes of Ndombele and Sissoko to match David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne.

The killer for Spurs will be the direct, counter-attacking threat. However, without Son Heung-min in the side, Lucas Moura will have to be the legs for the forward line.

Man City

Asserting their dominance with a big win over Spurs could be the turning point already, where the Citizens run away with title once again. With Man Utd crushing Chelsea 4-0 at Old Trafford, matching their neighbours by obliterating a better London side.

Furthermore, beating the third-best team in the league easily, as they beat everyone else would really put a dampener on the spirits of the league.

With Sane injured, we may see Mahrez step in his place after impressing against West Ham. But having the option between him and Bernardo Silva can’t hurt their chances of success.

It is likely that Pep Guardiola will favour Gabriel Jesus over Sergio Aguero once again. But it appears Raheem Sterling is taking the reigns on the goal-scoring front, so the South Americans have to step their game up too.

Man City are the best-drilled and most confident team in the league, as well as being the most talented. But if a fully focused and motivated Tottenham Hotspur turn up to fight, they could throw a spanner in the works for Man City’s third consecutive Premier League trophy.

Does Raheem Sterling want to be Man City’s main striker?

Man City’s 5-0 victory over West Ham saw Sterling get a hattrick on an opening day. By the looks of it, there’s plenty more to see from him…

Guardiola himself has said that being a striker would be an incredible position for Sterling. Understandable, seeing as he has scored a minimum of a goal per game since the beginning of Man City’s pre-season tour.

Gabriel Jesus is beginning to see more game time as Sergio Aguero reaches the latter stages of his career at 34 years old. But it looks as though Sterling is the one keen on filling the Argentine’s boots in becoming Man City’s goal scorer.

Upon Man City receiving a penalty against West Ham, Sterling and Aguero had to debate who took it.

This demonstrates how highly Sterling believes his impact is on the squad, to challenge a figure like Aguero. His behavior, motivation, and determination show a player itching to be in thoughts of the manager, for some reason or other.

In this case, it appears that Sterling wants to be the main man at Manchester City.

The English international has been pivotal to Man City’s recent back-to-back Premier League title. Finishing second top goal scorer in both seasons, with a total of 48 goals across the two, he will be looking to take up a notch this season.

What will be different about his game this season?

Many forget that he is only 24-years of age, and it is common for wingers to develop into magnificent strikers. Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi to name a few.

Come Christmas-time and Raheem Sterling is miles ahead of Aguero and Jesus on goals will we see him become the main man up front? What would come of Jesus and who would play on the wing instead?

Sterling has become increasingly clinical in front of goal over recent months and seasons. It is evident that he wants to score goals in and around the box for Manchester City.

We could see Guardiola give him these opportunities this season should he continue bagging goals in this fashion. Let’s just hope he can do it for England.

The Man City B team that would win the Premier League – Agree?

The distance between Man City and the rest of the league only grows larger after seeing this…

To be a part of Guardiola’s Man City, you must be talented and determined. But it still comes as a surprise that the once underdogs of the league have a B team that could still best the rest.

The Telegraph reported that Mourinho told Sky Sports: “Man City, Tottenham, Liverpool, and Man City B team. When I looked at the bench [against West Ham], the players not involved, I think the [City] B team could fight for the title.”

It is evident that Man City and Liverpool are the only teams who can fight for the title this season. Perhaps Spurs could sneak in there, but even as the third-best team in the league, they are a longshot from the top.

This leaves Arsenal, Chelsea and Man Utd lost below 3rd place in the Premier League. Meaning that Man City’s B team beats all three of these English giants hands-down.

The Football Manc Cave bring you Man City’s B team that could challenge for the Premier League title this season…

Attack

Aguero and Gabriel Jesus are interchangeable at number nine. However, with the Argentine reaching 34 years of age, Guardiola appears to be making room for the 22-year-old Brazilian. This leaves one of the Premier League’s greatest ever strikers to come on off the bench. Sane has been favoured less than Sterling and Bernardo Silva and has suffered a crucial injury that puts him out for half the season. Whilst this talented winger has what it takes to start, he is definitely in Pep’s B side.

Midfield

In the midfield we have Phil Foden, “Phil is the most, most, most talented player I have ever seen in my career as a manager” is what Guardiola said about the youngster. Making anything I have to add fairly irrelevant. Next to him would be the Brazilian brick wall Fernandinho and newly contracted Ilkay Gundogan, who the Blues clearly have faith in to impact the side off the bench.

Defence

In net is Bravo, who is a trusted second keeper behind Ederson, given faith to pull through in the Community Shield victory against Liverpool.

Otamendi and Mangala are favoured much less than Stones and Laporte. But this partnership has defensive experience and physicality, competent enough to see a side to many victories.

Right-back would be Kyle Walker, who has proven his quality time and time again for Man City. However, the incoming Joao Cancelo is likely to take the Englishman place. This gives Guardiola a B team right-back who is already proven as a champion.

Left-back could be Man City’s weakness in Angelino. But the promising youngster surrounded by sheer talent and quality could see his ability and confidence grow, as his team pull him throughout the stretch of the season.

Man City’s transfer window: how did Guardiola do?

Whoever thought this Man City squad couldn’t get any better were proved wrong this summer in the transfer window.

Manchester City has come off the back of a season that saw multiple avenues of success. Winning four out of four domestic trophies. Guardiola’s only weakness was European success with Man City.

Many would assume that given a second crack, the Man City squad of last season are good enough to reach the Champions League final. However, with the transfers made this summer, they could go much further in Europe.

Guardiola’s squad had arguably only two weaknesses, right-back and central-defensive midfield. With Kyle Walker losing a yard of pace but becoming more defensively experienced, he is being favoured at centre-back. Fernandinho was relied on as the rock of the defensive midfield. However, at 34 years of age with no competition for his spot, there was cause for concern.

To patch up the holes in his squad, Guardiola in typical Man City fashion has brought in two of Europe’s most elite footballers. Here are the three major factors of City’s transfer window that put the club in good stead for the future…

Joao Cancelo

Joao Cancelo is Man City’s new right-back. The 25-year-old was a starter in a very successful Juventus side, as well as winning UEFA Nations League with Portugal. Guardiola has brought in an exciting talent who knows what it takes to win.

Rodri

A slightly different character was brought in to replace Fernandinho. Rodri was bought from Atletico Madrid for £62million and has been in favour since proving his talent in pre-season. Rodri is a player, unlike Cancelo, who was not a ‘top dog’ in his previous league. However, bringing in a mix of champions and those who seek that title, will keep a healthy and hungry balance within the squad.

Living in the present and future, not the past

Young players such as Philippe Sandler have been given loan opportunities, demonstrating their hunger to provide a solid future for the club. Players who are deemed surplus to requirements such as Fabian Delph, Danilo and Douglas Luiz have been offloaded from the squad. This allows the likes of Phil Foden and Oleksandr Zinchenko to make more game time this season.

The Blues have gotten off to a good start this season by winning the Community Shield. And with the fantastic and intelligent transfer business in this window, it may be the start of their collection of trophies this season.

Two things we have learnt from Man City’s preseason

What is Manchester City’s form like going into the Premier League season? Here are two things we’ve learned about Pep Guardiola’s squad in pre-season.

Guardiola has had four pre-season games, plus the Community Shield victory over Liverpool, to prepare his squad for the campaign.

Out of the five games played, Man City have only lost one. Where Wolves held the side to a goalless draw, and won on penalties. However, Man City’s big wins came against a heavily rotated West Ham and two Japanese teams during the pre-season tour. As well as a 1-1 draw against Liverpool.

Wolves and Liverpool are both in the top 8 sides of the Premier League, and Man City struggled to break each of them down.

Third time unlucky?

In a season where Man City will be looking to be the second club to win the Premier League for the third season in a row, it may well not be too easy this time around. Over the past two Man City season wins, the gap between themselves and Spurs, and Liverpool has closed massively. Teams such as Everton, Wolves and Leicester are swimming into the big pond as Chelsea, Arsenal and Man Utd are desperate to put pressure on the top 3. Man City will be given a run for their money by the top 7 or 8 clubs in the league.

Man City can still score goals. Lots of them.

Man City of previous years have been known to destroy their opponents. Particularly the 6-0 win over Chelsea and the 9-0 win over Burton Albion. It is clear from the 14 goals in 5 games of pre-season that the majority of Guardiola’s squad are still pedigrees.

Raheem Sterling has been the one hitting the back of the net for the Citizens, whilst Aguero and Gabriel Jesus have been absent. If Sterling keeps his form and the two South Americans pull their weight also, Man City will get goals galore this season.

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