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Ilkay Gundogan is firing on all cylinders

Thursday 3rd November 2016
Much has been made in the media of the acrimonious exclusion from the first team of Ivorian midfielder Yaya Toure, it's fair to say his time in Manchester has been anything but low key.

That infamous incident with the birthday cake and currently there is the farce that is, the ongoing row with Yaya's agent are just some of the examples that have overshadowed Toure's achievements on the pitch. As a consequence of that row with the former Barcelona midfielder's agent, the man himself hasn't been involved with the first team this season.

This decision has attracted a lot of attention in the football community, but is it really that surprising? It shouldn't be, let us not forget Ladies and Gents that the current Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, is the same gaffer who got rid of him whilst at Barcelona.

Pep has a set way of doing things, you either like it or lump it. The decision to drop the former Shakhtar Donetsk man very much fits into Guardiola's hardened philosophy.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager has always had an emphasis on tracking back. In the case of Yaya Toure, he's never been one to do this, so is it honestly that surprising that he isn't the City squad? It's a point I have raised before, Yaya Toure is getting older and considering his best position is further up the field in the attacking third, The Citizens in that part of the pitch have more than enough cover.

One of the players who will be able to provide that cover is Ilkay Gundogan . Gundogan who formerly used to play for German giants Borussia Dortmund is starting to become a key player in that Manchester City midfield since his £20 million move from Dortmund.

Questions were arguably raised when manager Guardiola opted to sign the German international despite him coming off the back off quite a serious knee injury. Just like most things the Catalan manager has done in management, the signing of Ilkay Gundogan was arguably a master stroke.

Although not as Big as the Ivorian Yaya Toure and not having that "powerhouse" like presence, Gundogan just like his Ivorian predecessor has been scoring crucial goals for The Blues. A prime example of that was his two goals in the impressive win over Spanish giants Barcelona.

Goals against West Brom, Celtic and as I just mentioned Barcelona arguably demonstrates that the German has the goal scoring touch from midfield, something Toure brought to the City midfield in his prime. Yaya Toure has been on the wane for some time, arguably Manuel Pellegrini refused to address this situation during his final season with the club. There were big games last season where the 33-year-old cost City,due to his lack of mobility.

The signing of Ilkay Gundogan looks to have rectified the issue of a mobile midfielder, German international Gundogan just like the other midfielders in manager Pep Guardiola's team have shown the athleticism in that Man City midfield that arguably wasn't there last season when Toure was playing. When you have Gundogan playing as well as he is, scoring goals and in general contributing to the team, on the whole, one almost has to ask themselves the question, sorry Yaya Toure who?
Ayyaz Malik

Hi guys, I am Ayyaz. I type by day and I type by night, I type what others are thinking. I eat, drink and sleep football (I think in that order) . Watching football is part of my five a day. They say money makes the world go round, yeah right we all know it's football that makes the world go round. I am a Manchester United fan for my sins.


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