After experiencing the ups and downs of the first two years of English football, the Spanish international script season performed well Pep Guardiola’s team Guardiola’s decision not to play a defensive midfielder in the Champions League final last season is considered one of the main reasons for Manchester City loss to Chelsea, if not the main reason. The Champion League Final fans can buy Champions League Final Tickets from our website.
Six months have passed and it’s crazy to think that Rodri isn’t even fit to start that game.
The Spain international has been excluded from the second round of the semi-final against Paris Saint-Germain Guardiola prefers veteran Fernandinho.
By this time, Rodri had competed in all the knockout rounds and his frustration was evident during the warm-up rounds at the Etihad Stadium, where he was seen for a while putting his hands into his running shorts.
If this is a minor surprise, then the decision to let Fernandinho miss the final in Porto and choose Ilkay Gundogan as the base for the three midfielders is a huge blow to fans and the media. The impact and led Guardiola to difficult questions about his team selection and tactics.
Fast forward to today, Manchester City returned to the top of the Premier League, Rodri roared back and became one of Guardiola’s key players.
Nothing illustrates this better than the recent Leeds United and Newcastle fiasco when the former Atletico Madrid player was replaced relatively early to stay fresh over the busy holiday season.
For this 25-year-old young man, this is a quick change of fate.
Guardiola has been a former ball holding midfielder throughout his career and he places a lot of demands on those who play this position in his team. He seeks players who can combine positional discipline with high energy pressure, while also demonstrating a keen use of ball control to anchor the attack.
Having joined Barcelona in 2016, Fernandinho has a wealth of experience and maturity and can quickly master this role, following in the footsteps of Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets, Philipp Lahm and Bayern Munich’s and Xabi Alonso.
This role is demanding, even for someone like Rodri, who received a degree in management and business administration in November. However, he has shown that he can meet the requirements and is now stable and has become the cornerstone of Guardiola’s team.
“Last season he played very well. His performance may have declined in the latter stages of the season, but last season we gave him more playing time. This season we have to be careful,” Guardiola said earlier this season time ago.
“He played at a strange level. Stability – not a game – he has to be here all the time, 7 to 8 times [out of 10 times].
“He can’t be 3 or 4 because it destroys the team, and it can’t be 10 because 10 is for attackers. He maintains this consistency both defensively and offensively.”
Rodri is different from his first two seasons with Manchester City. His confidence and belief in his abilities are growing day by day.
He has become a midfielder, ready to send his teammates to move, break into the attacking position like against Leeds United, or score 25 yards away like a goal against Everton.
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