Ebene Magazine – Champions League: Versatile and experienced Ilkay Gundogan at the center of the trophy pursuit in Manchester City – Sports News, Firstpost

Ebene Magazine - Champions League: Versatile and experienced Ilkay Gundogan at the center of the trophy pursuit in Manchester City - Sports News, Firstpost

Gundogan already has his best scorers season to date with 13 in all competitions, 11 of which have been scored in his last 13 Premier League games

File image by Ilkay Gundogan. AP

Ilkay Gundogan’s free goal form has played an important role in Manchester City. They are up 10 points at the top of the Premier League and have secured a third title in four seasons.

City’s final search for the trophy they want most begins this week with the first leg of the Champions League against Borussia Mönchengladbach.

As Pep Guardiola’s first commitment after arriving in Manchester, Gundogan joined a project that was determined to shape Europe’s leading club competition.

Despite six major trophies in the last five years and the likelihood that City will win even more this season, the Champions League has been a constant source of frustration for Guardiola.

After an 18-game win in all competitions, the Premier League leaders will not be the first time Awarded as a Champions League favorite.

If this is to be the year in which Sheikh Mansour’s billion dollar investment in the Champions League pays off , Gundogan is probably a central figure.

The German has already had his best goalscorer season to date with 13 in all competitions, 11 of which were scored in his last 13 Premier League games.

In Gundogan’s game it’s about much more than just goals. As a metronomic midfielder who rarely gives away the ball, he fits the profile, as the Guardiola type of player loves.

« He’s such an intelligent player, » said the former boss of Barcelona and Bayern Munich. « That’s one of the things I value most, intelligence – the players who understand everything that happens during the game and solve it as quickly as possible. »

However, Gundogan’s versatility also made him one Jürgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel’s favorites during his time at Borussia Dortmund.

« Ilkay was one of the best players I have ever coached, » said Liverpool boss Klopp before Gundogan twice in a 4-1 win earlier this month against the English champions.

« If you are smart and experience comes into play, this is another leap in your level of performance. I am not at all surprised. »

Gundogan’s early days in England were made by a Cruciate ligament damage interrupted, which excluded him for nine months.

On his return he was facing a midfield of Fernandinho, David Silva and Kevin De Bruyne, which shone as City 2018/19 a top English record of 100 Points to get to the title.

Gundogan is now 30 years old and Silva has left. Fernandinho plays a small role at 35. He is one of the city’s leading figures.

When De Bruyne was recently excluded for a month with a thigh injury, he scored six goals in five games as the Guardiola men hadn’t lost a point.

This maturity has also emerged when he started a charity campaign to help local bars, cafes and restaurants struggling to survive amid the coronavirus lockdown.

But like many of his teammates, Gundogan has yet to do his best in the Champions League -Giving stage in a City jersey after making a name for himself in the 2012/13 final for Klopps Dortmund.

With his former boss, who is now struggling with an injury crisis, defending Liverpool’s title in the Premier League , Devastated Barcelona on the way out. Owner Bayern Munich is showing signs of fatigue and Real Madrid is no longer the strength it once was. City may never have a better chance to finally break through in the Champions League.

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February 23, 2021 12:02:34 PM


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Arteta knows Pep Guardiola well after working under the City boss in Manchester for three years before returning to Arsenal after previously playing for the Gunners.

Manchester City broke the English football record for consecutive victories for a top club when they won their 15th trot.

Guardiola, who dropped Jesus on the bench in the 4-1 Premier League win in Liverpool on Sunday, said: « It does a lot for his confidence. He could have scored more goals but he played really, really well . « 

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Ref: https://www.firstpost.com



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