Micah Richards and Jamie Redknapp have heaped praise on Manchester City defender Joao Cancelo following the Citizens’ 4-1 win against Brighton.
The Premier League champions were in relentless form as they demolished the Seagulls at the Amex on Saturday evening.
Pep Guardiola’s men had the game all-but won by half-time, going into the break 3-0 up thanks to a Phil Foden brace and an Ilkay Gundogan tap-in.
Alexis Mac Allister pulled one back for the hosts from the penalty spot, before Riyad Mahrez sealed the win with a fourth deep into injury time.
The headlines are often stolen by the players aforementioned – as well players like Ruben Dias and Kevin De Bruyne – but Redknapp and Richards have highlighted Cancelo’s contribution.
“Passes into the final third is so key,” Richards told Sky Sports. “He’s second in interceptions. It’s difficult for him because Kyle Walker has took that number one right-back spot.
“But, he played on the left and played just as well. He’s gone into the midfield and done so well. He can get on the half-turn and play them balls. He’s great to watch and has been great for Manchester City.”
Redknapp added: “It’s difficult to add any more superlatives. He’s brilliant.”
Cancelo was on target for the Citizens as they defeated Club Brugge in the Champions League on Tuesday. Youngster Cole Palmer got on the scoresheet, prompting praise from Guardiola.
As reported by Manchester Evening News, Guardiola suggested that Palmer is a player “for the future” for City:
“Today we had 17 players so we don’t have enough. I think he’s going to stay this season with us,” Guardiola said.
“Cole has a special quality in front of the box that is difficult to find. When he has the ball there, most of them finish in the net. It is not easy to find it but I know how it works with young players in all countries.
“Be calm, be patient like we have done with Phil. His position is the second team – but at the same time he is training with us, taking the rhythm and the principles and of course he’s a player for the future for the club. I’m happy for the goal, he could have done a few actions a little bit better but it’s experience.
“When we can do it, we give the young players the opportunity.”