Manchester City golden boy Phil Foden ‘increasingly frustrated at lack of game time’ with midfielder desperate for run of games in first team after warming bench
- Phil Foden has only started one Premier League match since October 17
- The 20-year-old was deeply dismayed about not starting against Newcastle
- Foden scored against Arsenal in the Carabao Cup before being benched again
- However, he does not want to leave City and gets on well with Pep Guardiola
Phil Foden is said to be frustrated by a lack of playing time at Manchester City after yet again coming off the bench during Saturday’s 2-0 win over Newcastle United.
Despite doing his chances of a starting place no harm with a confident performance and coolly taken goal in the 4-1 Carabao Cup win over Arsenal in midweek, Foden returned to the bench for the game against the struggling Magpies, something that is said to have deeply dismayed the 20-year-old.
Pep Guardiola’s comments after the win over the Gunners have also heightened concerns that Foden is not yet trusted to play a key role in City’s Premier League campaign, sources have told Telegraph Sport.
Phil Foden is said to have been dismayed at not being given a starting spot against Newcastle
The 20-year-old returned to the bench despite scoring against Arsenal in the Carabao Cup
‘Phil has an incredible energy but in the final decision, the final pass, he has to slow down a little bit,’ Guardiola said. ‘He needs experience to be calm in some [moments].
‘He plays football in the same rhythm and football must be played in different rhythms.
‘Sometimes you have to walk, sometimes you have to have rhythm and sometimes you have to change the rhythm.
‘In the final third, especially in the box, the top, top players have patience. They have this second of time or half-second of time to be disposed to take a decision.’
The England international’s start in the 1-1 draw against West Brom on December 15 was his first in the league for nearly two months despite being fit for the entire intervening period.
Foden has featured far more prominently this term than he did in the early stages of last season, but he believes he can contribute a lot more.
Foden has found getting into City’s attacking midfield three tough despite some good displays
Guardiola’s switch from a 4-3-3 to a 4-2-3-1 has also restricted Foden somewhat, as Raheem Sterling and Kevin De Bruyne have nailed-down spots on the left and in the No 10 role respectively, while Riyad Mahrez or Bernardo Silva are the preferred options on the right.
Foden did however play on the right twice during Project Restart in what was a goal-laden return for the midfielder, as he scored once and made another against Liverpool before netting against Watford in July.
Foden then picked up where he left on in the current campaign as he bagged City’s second in a 3-1 opening-day victory against Wolves, where he was again deployed on the right. He has not started in that position since though.
Foden is not at the stage where he wants to leave though and gets on well with Pep Guardiola
The Stockport-born creator is not at the stage where he is angling for a move though, and trusts Guardiola to take his game to new heights.
Guardiola and City have made it known how much they admire Foden, but it will intriguing to see how the situation plays out over the next few months.