Published: Sat, December 15, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Manchester City's Pep Guardiola praises Phil Foden for 'incredible' play

Manchester City's Pep Guardiola praises Phil Foden for 'incredible' play

The 18-year-old nearly got on the scoresheet himself when he forced a fine save from Oliver Baumann with a fierce left-foot volley.

Sane was guilty of overplaying as City incredibly spurned a three-against-one when Sterling fed the German, who tried to tee up the surprised Bernardo Silva rather than going for goal himself and Baumann saved the Portuguese's shot. Guardiola admits it hasn't been easy for the England youth global to establish himself at the Etihad Stadium given the quality ahead of him in the squad, but the Spanish coach has no doubts about his exceptional talent.

"It was incredible and fascinating to watch as a spectator", Guardiola said at his pre-match press conference on Tuesday. "I would never have doubts about the quality of that guy - not just with the ball". It's the way he fights with the ball - he is not skinny, he is really, really strong.

City created most of the several clear-cut chances in an entertaining encounter, but only came to life after Hoffenheim took the lead through Andrej Kramaric's 16th-minute penalty.

"I know it is not easy to play in the big clubs".

And he found the net again 16 minutes after the break as Pep Guardiola's side bounced back from their Premier League loss away at Chelsea on Saturday, while Hoffenheim finish bottom of the table to miss out on the Europa League.

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City made life hard for themselves with a flat performance in losing at home to Lyon in their opening group game and were similarly caught cold having already secured their place in the last 16.

Leroy Sane had both of City's goals on either side of half-time, the first a spectacular 30-yard free kick. "The second half the team was much better".

"We started flat because Hoffenheim were so demanding about how they attacked the space and physically they were stronger".

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino is hopeful of Spurs being able to play the home leg of their Champions League last-16 tie at their new stadium. A draw will see City finish top.

He said: "I'm proud of the way we have played in the Champions League".

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