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Man City Boss Pep Guardiola Claims Rising Forward Now 'Knows How to Fight in the Premier League' After Everton Outing

CityXtra
CityXtra
 2021-11-22
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The Sky Blues returned to second place in the table with another win against the Toffees, following Liverpool's 4-0 thrashing of Arsenal and Chelsea's 3-0 win away at Leicester on Saturday.

With Jack Grealish out injured and Kevin De Bruyne sidelined after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, Pep Guardiola handed academy star Cole Palmer his first start in the Premier League against Rafael Benitez's side.

The 19-year-old was positioned down the middle by Pep Guardiola, as he partnered Raheem Sterling and fellow Manchester City academy graduate Phil Foden in an all-English frontline.

While he failed to truly influence proceedings, Palmer helped link play in and around the opposition box for his side, who put in a dominating display ahead of a crunch Champions League encounter against PSG in mid-week.

"I’m very pleased with his (Palmer) performance," said Guardiola in his post-match press conference, as quoted by the club's official website.

“It was difficult for the people who played in the middle, it was hard to find spaces. The striker is the most difficult position in the team."

Despite having a rather quiet performance in the opening 45 minutes, Palmer was involved to a greater extent in the second-half, as Manchester City sealed the game with Rodri and Bernardo Silva getting in on the act after Sterling's first-half opener.

Guardiola added, “As the game went on, he (Palmer) showed his quality in the final third. He made a good performance."

“Now, he has almost 90 minutes in his legs and knows how to fight in the Premier League against experienced players."

The Catalan boss also handed another of Manchester City's young stars his first minutes of Premier League action, in the closing stages of the tie.

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