Rewind back to a few months ago to the FA Youth Cup final. The result? Chelsea winning it yet again beating Man city in the final. But there was something victorious in this defeat.
One young boy shone brightly in the light blue colours and he goes by the name Phil Foden. He strode through a powerful Chelsea defence and unleashed a left-footed strike to help City draw the first leg and keep the tie alive.
Operating in tandem with Brahim Diaz and Jadon Sancho, the Stockport born midfielder has quickly gathered the attention of Pep Guardiola. He was named amongst the substitutes for the dead rubber against Celtic in the Champions League last season giving the 16-year-old an interesting experience. He became the third youngest player in City’s history to make it to the bench.
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Foden was also one of the stars of England’s march to the U-17 European Championship final and scored with yet another sweet left footed strike in this final as well.
What’s more? Phil is a local boy and has been with the club since just before his 8th birthday. Having been wrapped up from The Red Vulcans, the City coaches have overseen his development and are excited about him.
In his early teens, he was held back slightly due to his weak stature on accounts of physicality but he has transformed into a deceptively quick player with an awe-inspiring first touch.
Foden was included in the USA tour and provided opportunities to show his worth against the big guns. Phil started against Manchester United and produced an eye-catching display. The diminutive midfielder many times held his own against the likes of Paul Pogba and other United midfielders.
Pep like City fans worldwide did not let slip off this display and he received praise all around. “It’s a long time since I saw something like this. His performance was another level. He’s 17-years-old, he’s a City player.” Said Pep in praise of the 17-year-old.
Foden has been promoted to the City senior team as a reward of those displays at the youth level as well a stellar pre-season. When asked about the first team in February he said he would like to be there in 2 years’ time but this could be a welcome surprise for him. He will be serving as a backup to the Pep’s senior midfielders this season and hoping to further strengthen his case to be a regular here at the Etihad.