Young Manchester City left-back Angeliño has been one of the most impressive performers in pre-season so far, catching the eye with his darting runs down the left and intelligent link-up play. The 19-year-old spent a year in New York on loan at sister club New York City FC, and looks to have benefited from it.
With Aleks Kolarov and Gaël Clichy both over 30 and the full-back positions needing to be addressed soon, both Angeliño and compatriot Pablo Maffeo, a right-back, may convince Pep Guardiola that he doesn’t need to spend heavily in these positions.
In an exclusive interview with Sam Lee of Goal, Angeliño has spoken of his admiration for Pep Guardiola and also of his chances at City. The Spaniard said of the current pre-season tour:
“I think the best thing for me was to wait and I think this year could be my year.
“I think [the tour] has been going really well. I’m really pleased with my performance in the last few games.
“I will always be thankful to Pep and his staff for giving me this chance, I’m just really enjoying the chances I get and hopefully I get some more.”
On his time in New York, Angeliño said:
“It was a good decision. I think it really helped me improve my game by playing on the biggest stage and I think it helped me a lot to come back to City.
“I didn’t just go just to get experience, I think I gave it all over there too.
“But obviously the main focus for me was coming back to City and breaking into the first team.”
Angeliño is also impressed by Pep’s training methods and spoke of the intense sessions:
“It’s been hard, but really enjoyable. It’s been really good, really good.
“I’ve been enjoying every day with Pep and the staff and I’m learning every day. They encourage a lot so I’m just working hard.
“I’m really looking forward to [the new season], hopefully I’ll get the chance to break into the first team. I’m still thankful to the staff and my team-mates who have helped get me to here.”
Could the young left-back be part of Guardiola’s plans this season? He has Clichy and Kolarov, who won’t be joining Besiktas after they snapped up Adriano from Barcelona, to contend with, but has been a breath of fresh air down the left in pre-season and Guardiola labelled both he and Maffeo ‘amazing’ after their performances against Bayern Munich.