Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has no intention of allowing teenage midfielder Phil Foden to leave the club on loan.
Foden is yet to start a Premier League game, but has made eight appearances off the bench in the top flight for the champions in 2018-19 so far.
The teenager started Sunday’s 7-0 thrashing of Rotherham United in the FA Cup third round, scoring his first goal at the Etihad Stadium.
Although there was a slice of luck in the goal, Foden kicking the ball on to his standing leg to wrong-foot Marek Rodak, he was assured throughout.
And Guardiola is certain the 18-year-old will have a bright career at City, where the manager feels the youngster’s short and long term future lies.
‘No way. No, impossible,’ Guardiola told reporters when asked if Foden could leave on loan. ‘He is going to stay with us many, many years… impossible.
‘Today Phil Foden was there and his movement was incredible. 90 minutes for his experience and self-confidence, but of course he must improve. He will learn in future and play better.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) January 6, 2019
Kyle Walker also shone, having found himself playing a back-up role to Danilo in recent weeks, the Brazilian selected for Thursday’s 2-1 win over Liverpool in the Premier League in place of the England international.
‘I decided for Danilo [against Liverpool], he deserves to play. He played good at Southampton, today Kyle plays the best game of the season by far,’ Guardiola said of his right-back selection dilemma.
‘It was incredible the way he played. It’s difficult for me to choose, but I never give Danilo four or five games in a row. Sometimes I’m really unfair with many, many players and when I decided to play him against Southampton he did really well and that’s why he played against Liverpool.’
Guardiola also welcomed playmaker Kevin De Bruyne back to action after the Belgium international sat out the Liverpool win as an unused substitute, and the City boss is hopeful his talisman can be a crucial factor in the title race.
‘We spoke with him yesterday and told him to play at full intensity 65-70 minutes for his rhythm and his injury,’ the Catalan continued.
‘He played incredible, created chances and has vision that others aren’t able to see. Hopefully in the last part of the season he is going to help us because we need him.
‘Last season without him [winning the title with a record 100 points] would not have been possible. We try to be a team, and of course so far we have done incredible in terms of results. To have 50 points in the Premier League is incredible.
‘We had two seasons without [Benjamin] Mendy at fullback, we are sad but we have to carry on. Today Kevin was our captain and he showed the reason why he was our captain on the field,’ he concluded.