Pep Guardiola stressed his confidence in Rodri amidst heavy criticism from the media.
Many have questioned the midfielder’s abilities after his debut season in a Manchester City shirt.
City laid out £60 million in transfer fees to sign Rodri last year. While he is eventually expected to replace Fernandinho, the 24-year-old is not quite there yet. He is being fielded mostly in a double-pivot this season, so as to form a stronger base in the City midfield.
Of course, Rodri did impress in City’s 0-0 draw against FC Porto on Tuesday. Speaking after the game, Guardiola said, ”He’s a player that has many special qualities, we don’t have many. Incredible character and personality to play. Last game, he had 45 minutes so he’s more fresh than the other ones so that’s why he play from the beginning”.
Now that Fernandinho is back to fitness, Rodri’s game time might get reduced but there is plenty of football to go around. Guardiola plans on rectifying his last season results with more silverware in this one.
That means the squad will constantly need to rotate around the Premier League and other competitions. Rodri will be heavily depended on to either partner Fernandinho or serve as back up throughout the campaign.