Amid all the title celebrations this weekend after a fantastic season for the club, it is very easy to forget that the next generation of Manchester City stars currently out on loan were in action this weekend.
In England, Joe Hart was in the spotlight once again. The former England number one was back in net for West Ham on Monday night after a fantastic display against Chelsea the previous weekend, however the former City favourite wasn’t able to replicate his heroics. Hart was at fault for the opening goal in West Ham’s 1-1 draw, spilling Shaqiri’s shot which was easily tapped in by Peter Crouch. Since leaving Manchester City on loan, his performances have come under serious scrutiny with each error continuously highlighted in the media. Hart’s fumbled effort was his fourth serious error leading to a goal this season, the most amongst all of the England keepers in the Premier League.
In the second tier, Angus Gunn was in net for Norwich as they fell to a 2-0 home defeat to high-flying Cardiff – the young keeper is now without a clean sheet in 9 games for the Canaries. Meanwhile, Bersant Celina wasn’t involved in Ipswich’s 2-1 away defeat to Nottingham Forest, the Kosovan international left out for Bryan Klug’s first game as caretaker manager. In League One, Rodney Kongolo watched from the sidelines as Doncaster extended their unbeaten run to 5 games with a 2-1 away victory at MK Dons. Meanwhile, Kean Bryan was also not involved for Oldham’s vital relegation 6-pointer at home to Walsall, which his side drew 1-1. Bryan took to Twitter to celebrate Manchester City becoming champions.
— Kean Bryan (@keanB07) April 15, 2018
In Scotland, Patrick Roberts was substituted on in the 73rd minute of Celtic’s 4-0 hammering of fierce rivals Rangers. The young winger is being eased back into the squad by Brendan Rodgers after his latest injury ruled him out of action for over four months. Roberts will hope to be back in the first team squad for Celtic’s trip to Hibernian on Saturday afternoon. He may come up against Brandon Barker, on loan at Hibernian, who is back in training after his hamstring injury. The 21-year-old hasn’t been in action since 3 February and may be hoping to feature this weekend.
In Holland, NAC Breda are continuing to fight tirelessly to retain their place in the Eredivisie. This weekend, all five of the stars out on loan featured as our sister club were defeated 2-1 at home to Willem II. Angelino was the star of the show once again, the Spanish left-back following on from his winning goal last week against Vitesse with an assist after just 29 minutes. He has impressed all season with 3 goals and 5 assists to his name and it wouldn’t be surprising if he is considered to be in Pep Guardiola’s plans this pre-season. He played alongside Pablo Mari in the back four while Manu Garcia, Paolo Fernandes and Thierry Ambrose starred up front. Unfortunately, Ambrose was forced off with injury after 39 minutes. The Frenchman has been in good form this year with 10 goals to his name and will be a serious blow to NAC Breda’s survival chances with just 3 games to go.
Thierry Ambrose is expected to miss the rest of the season after sustaining a knee injury.
The 21-year-old has scored 10 goals for loan club NAC Breda in the Eredivisie this season. pic.twitter.com/W7u6IiLRfE
— City Watch (@City_Watch) April 17, 2018
In Spain, our affiliate side Girona have run into a slump in their battle for a Europa League spot. The Catalan side faced Real Betis in a vital face-off at the Montilivi, however Machin’s side were unfortunate as they had three goals ruled out for offside. Pablo Maffeo was the only Manchester City star to feature as Girona were defeated 1-0. Aleix Garcia was on the bench while Douglas Luiz was not involved in the matchday squad. Girona sit comfortably in 8th, just 3 points behind Sevilla in 7th. In the Segunda, Yaw Yeboah continues to miss out for Real Ovideo – the Ghanaian winger has struggled for game time in Spain and was left out for his side’s 1-0 home victory to Gimnastic.
Elsewhere, Yangel Herrera continues to star at New York City FC. The young Venezuelan central midfielder played well in New York City’s early title clash with Atlanta, the score finishing 2-2. Patrick Vieira’s side sit top of the Eastern Conference, currently undefeated with 17 points from the first 7 games.
Over in Turkey, it is somewhat of a four-way title battle, just one point separating Galatasaray, Besiktas, Istanbul Basaksehir and Fenerbahce. Jason Denayer was involved as Galatasaray picked up a huge 3 points against Istanbul. The performance marked the Belgian centre-back’s first performance for the club since 4 February after a serious injury ruled him out of action for two months. He is expected to be back in the squad as a regular and should play in his side’s cup semi-final at home to Akhisaspor.