City Trio In Team Of Easter (19/4/17)
Manchester City are represented in the latest Premier League team of the week that has been selected by BBC pundit Garth Crooks.
Actually Garth is now down as a 'Football Analyst' these days, a posh term for a pundit then!
The performances by Jesus Navas, Vincent Kompany and Leroy Sane in the three nil victory over Southampton at the weekend at St Mary's Stadium was enough to earn them a place in the side alongside the other, in the opinion of the former Spurs striker anyway, most impressive performers in the topflight over the latest weekend.
I think we'll already know ourselves, and not just based on the latest performance, why Crooks, we'll also not argue with it, selected the trio as part of his team but explaining his choice he told the BBC.
'Where has Jesus Navas' form suddenly come from? In the same way Victor Moses has found a new role starring as a wing-back, Navas seems to be doing equally well, but as a genuine full-back. Navas' pace has neutralised raids down City's right side, and in attack the Spaniard seems to have found a confidence to deliver decisive balls into areas I had never seen in his game before. Pep Guardiola finding this position for Navas, not to mention invest his faith and time in the player, has proved to be quite an innovation. It has given the team options and, with the introduction of a fit Vincent Kompany, managed to revolutionise City's back four.'
'How good was it to see Vincent Kompany back and among the goals? I have seldom met a player who is more impressive than the Manchester City captain. When he scored his first goal for the club since his return from yet another injury, the delight of his team-mates and the travelling City fans was evident. However, it was his defensive performance that was most impressive. I said a few weeks ago that if Kompany had been playing in City's game at Arsenal this month, Shkodran Mustafi would never have scored the Gunners' equalising header from a corner - such is the Belgian's all-round aerial power and general inspiration. Arsenal got away without feeling the effects of Kompany's influence but Southampton did not. In fact, the Saints were blown away by City's performance, which was led by the Belgian defender. Great captain, great leader, great performance.'
'This kid is going to be special. It has been a long time since I've seen a young lad look so promising. He is quick, direct, loves to take players on and scores goals. If you're a player with a bright future it doesn't get better than that. It took a wonderful save from Fraser Forster to stop the Germany international from opening his account but the Southampton keeper was only delaying the inevitable. The football played by Manchester City for their second goal was complete and utter bliss. From the moment Kevin de Bruyne (the king of the assists) won the ball in midfield, Sane was off like a hare, racing 40 yards to support De Bruyne, who provided him with the opportunity to score. It takes guts, desire and fitness for a player to get into that position and offer alternatives for the man on the ball. That is what Sane now offers a Guardiola team who look better every time I see them. Pep is getting this team right.'
It's always good to see the club represented in this way, and well played to all three for their recognition, but the most important thing about the weekend was of course the points.
Simon Mignolet (Liverpool), Jesus Navas (Manchester City), Vincent Kompany (Manchester City), Phil Jagielka (Everton), Marcos Rojo (Manchester United), Leroy Sane (Manchester City), Ross Barkley (Everton), Ander Herrera (Manchester United), Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur), Marko Arnautovic (Stoke City), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)