Celina using Silva as role model
- 20 February 2016 08:53
- Posted by @dclayton_mcfc
Plenty to go at this morning ahead of tomorrow’s FA Cup tie at Chelsea, but we’ll start with the Independent’s interview with City youngster Bersant Celina.
The talented midfielder is tipped to make his full debut at Stamford Bridge and is interviewed at length by the paper who, with some justification, believe he could be the next EDS player to break through to the first team.
Here’s a snippet, with the Kosovo teen reflecting on a recent disappointment against Sunday’s opponents: ‘It was our last year to win the FA Youth Cup, and we worked really hard,’ Celina reflects. ‘The best team won, but it was a really disappointing evening.
‘If we are talking about revenge, I have already revenged myself. We beat Chelsea 2-0 in the Under-21 League.’ Celina, playing in attacking midfield, scored one brilliant free-kick and set up the other goal for Thierry Ambrose. ‘This is different, this is bigger.’
“Celina believes he is ready to step up. He is considered at City to be the hardest working of all their youngsters and has personally impressed Pellegrini. There was serious interest from Celtic, Middlesbrough and Derby County for a loan move last month, but Pellegrini vetoed it.
"With Samir Nasri and Kevin de Bruyne injured, his side needs creative midfielders. City are now trying to tie Celina to a new five-and-a-half year deal.
“Pellegrini will only be in charge at the City of Manchester Stadium for another three months, but Celina feels a debt of gratitude to him, praising his manager without prompting.”
‘I am very thankful,’ he says. ‘I really like him and I have a feeling that he likes me as well. He tells me I don’t need to show my skills, it doesn’t make me a better player. He says to keep everything simple, and not to lose the ball.
‘I learn just by looking at Silva; the way he plays, the way he passes the ball, how he takes care of it and doesn’t lose it. All the details in his game.’
Staying with the FA Cup, Fernando is interviewed in Four Four Two and says the Blues must ignore Diego Costa’s mind games.
They write: “Fernando insists Manchester City must not obsess over provocative Chelsea striker Diego Costa as the teams prepare to meet in the FA Cup.
“City will the make trip to Stamford Bridge for Sunday's fifth-round clash against Chelsea, with all eyes set to be on Costa.
“The feisty Spain international has enjoyed some heated exchanges with City, and the match in London is expected to be no different.
“And Fernando is braced for what the 27-year-old has to offer.
‘We know what he is like, what he will do. Costa is always the same. He tries to obstruct opponents, to wind them up.
‘But we know what to expect from him. He always tries to provoke. What we have to do is ignore this, to concentrate on ourselves, to focus on what we can do to win the game.
‘There are other players in the Chelsea team to think about anyway. What we cannot allow ourselves to do is obsess about Costa.’
Seems like decent advice!
Meanwhile, The Bleacher Report gives deserved praise to one of the Blues’ unsung heroes this season – Bacary Sagna.
Columnist Rob Pollard writes: “It’s difficult for a player who is playing so infrequently to find anything like their best form, particularly one trying to adapt to a new side after spending nine years at one club.
“Yet, still he was criticised. There was a feeling he was nowhere near Zabaleta’s level, and City would have been better off using a young player. A waste of wages and, at 31, too old.
“This season, though, opinions have, quite rightly, changed. He’s been superb and is the most improved player in the City squad.
“With Zabaleta, previously indestructible, suffering two significant knee injuries, Sagna has been relied upon this season to hold down the right-back spot. It’s a role in modern-day football that requires a high level of energy expenditure, with rotation seen by most managers as key.
“Yet, Sagna has played 33 times already this season. His total of 1,980 minutes of league action is the highest of any outfield player in the City squad. His performance level, despite those demands, has remained high throughout the campaign.”
Lastly, the Mirror suggest referee Mark Clattenburg may be punished for a decision that still baffles City fans.
The official’s decision to award a penalty against Spurs was widely criticised in the media and the Mirror report: “Mark Clattenburg is set to be axed from the next round of Premier League games.
“It comes just a week after the referee gave a controversial penalty for Tottenham with a handball decision against Manchester City's Raheem Sterling.
“Television replays suggested it hit Sterling's back and it outraged City boss Manuel Pellegrini who launched a stinging attack on the high-profile referee after his team's defeat last Sunday.”
“Pellegrini escaped an FA charge for his comments but ex-referee Graham Poll accused Clattenburg of "breaking the golden rule" of refereeing by ‘guessing.’”
That’s all for today – more of the same tomorrow…