Monday, October 2, 2023

Former Anderlecht Youngster Linked With An Exit From Manchester City: Should Guardiola Sanction His Exit?

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Ankit Seth
Ankit is a 24-year-old, aspiring to have his voice heard through what he writes. Charismatic and frankly moral, adhering to his principles and beliefs. Out to search for a purpose in life and yet to settle on that matter.

According to a report from Manchester Evening News, former Anderlecht youngster Sergio Gomez is being linked with an exit from Manchester City this summer. Gomez joined as a £14m signing the previous summer, but his arrival came after the start of the season. Initially brought in as a backup left-back, he had undergone a positional transformation under the guidance of Vincent Kompany at Anderlecht, transitioning from an attacking midfielder to his new role.

Gomez’s Underwhelming Debut Season At Manchester City

Positive signs emerged early in his debut campaign as Gomez demonstrated his attacking prowess and seamlessly filled in for Joao Cancelo during his rest periods or on the opposite flank. However, as the season progressed, the young Spanish player’s involvement became limited. He made a total of sixteen appearances, with only four of them as a starter, and unfortunately, he could only contribute a single assist during that time.

The 22-year-old failed to make an impact owing to the limited game time and only averaged 0.8 tackles, 0.7 clearances, 0.6 shots and 0.4 key passes per game in the Premier League. However, he deserves credit for maintaining a pass accuracy of 89.2% in the English top flight (stats via whoscored).

Sergio Gomez of Manchester City linked with an exit
Manchester City’s Spanish defender #21 Sergio Gomez warms up ahead of the UEFA Champions League final football match between Inter Milan and Manchester City at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul, on June 10, 2023. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Should Guardiola Sanction His Exit?

Gomez exhibits strong tackling skills, demonstrating excellent timing and the ability to make crucial interceptions to regain possession in his own half. He swiftly clears his lines when the opposition applies pressure and displays proficiency in initiating play from the defensive line.

Moreover, the Spanish talent possesses the ability to create scoring opportunities for his teammates and has decent finishing skills. While his primary position is left-back, he also showcases versatility by being capable of playing as a left-sided wide player or even in the right-back position if the need arises.

Initially, the young talent was expected to be sent out on loan soon after his arrival. However, the fact that Pep Guardiola opted to retain him at the Etihad Stadium indicates the Spanish manager’s belief in his potential to contribute to the club.

Therefore, it would be premature to authorise his departure this summer. Instead, Guardiola should consider alternative options, such as sending him out on loan to facilitate his development or, alternatively, integrating him into the first team by providing him with more playing opportunities at the Etihad Stadium in the upcoming season.

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