Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says he has no issues with being unable to give Phil Foden more playing time because the midfielder will learn quickly due to his “incredible work ethic”.
Guardiola has been reluctant to hand the youngster many starts this season, for example in last Saturday’s 2-0 win over Crystal Palace when the Englishman came on in second-half stoppage time.
However, Guardiola has been insistent that the club must not let him go or let him be sold and speaking to reporters at his latest press conference, the manager backed Foden to become a real force in the City side.
“Every season it will be better. It’s a time, a process of time,” Guardiola said. “Being in the stadium, playing the minutes he has to play.
“Sometimes you have to pass, sometimes you have to run, sometimes you have to be the decision-maker.
“At 23, he will be better than now, at 26, he will be better than at 23 because he’s an incredible work ethic guy.
“In training sessions, he’s a fighter and the quality is there.”
Guardiola also confirmed on Friday that he will be without Rodri and Oleksandr Zinchenko for the foreseeable future, with both on the sidelines with injury.
City face Aston Villa on Saturday and can close the gap on leaders Liverpool to three points ahead of their game against Tottenham on Sunday.