Manchester City are nearly through the international break and the lads can’t come back soon enough. Here are the Tuesday headlines to get you headed in the right direction for the Manchester derby at the weekend.
STONES INJURED AND GUNDOGAN ON TARGET AS ENGLAND DRAW - David Clayton - ManCity.com
All we asked was that the boys were returned to us unharmed.
Stones had been in excellent form for City, filling in at right-back during Kyle Walker’s absence and scoring a superb goal against Borussia Dortmund.
Ironically, it was the fit-again Walker who replaced Stones.
Prior to the injury, the only moment of note came when England keeper Nick Pope saw a poor clearance fall to Ilkay Gundogan who put his shot over the bar.
Manchester City suffer potential major defensive injury blow ahead of Manchester Derby - Harry Winter - City Xtra
On the bright side, Walker made his return to the pitch in this window.
The 28-year-old, who missed England’s defeat to Italy on Friday through suspension, suffered an apparent hamstring injury in the 36th minute against Germany at Wembley Stadium.
Stones was pictured to be visibly upset, as he was replaced by teammate Kyle Walker.
The City centre-back has struggled with injury in the opening weeks of the season, making just six starts for Pep Guardiola’s side.
Against both Borussia Dortmund and most recently against Wolves, the Englishman featured at right-back, amid Kyle Walker’s absence through injury.
Manchester City are scheduled to play eight matches next month, with the FIFA World Cup also a matter of weeks away.
Stones’ latest injury is a potential huge blow for both the Blues and England.
Ilkay Gundogan scored for Germany in 90 minutes of action vs England. John Stones was replaced on 37 minutes with a suspected hamstring injury, while Kyle Walker (53 minutes) and Phil Foden (66 minutes) were also involved in the 3-3 draw. @ManCity— City Xtra (@City_Xtra) September 26, 2022
Bellingham’s big decision: Man Utd, Liverpool, City and Chelsea all desperate to sign Dortmund’s £100m man - James Robson - Goal.com
There will be plenty of competition for Jude’s signature... if he’s even ready to move from Dortmund.
Bellingham knows his worth, knows his own mind – and has the assuredness of someone much older than his tender years to follow his own path.
Dortmund, he decided, was a better environment to develop his prodigious talents than Old Trafford.
Erling Haaland thought likewise when being courted by United at around the same time – and it didn’t turn out too badly for him.
So, like Haaland, Bellingham is set to be at the centre of an almighty transfer scramble when he leaves Dortmund – but don’t rule out Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Barcelona or Paris Saint-Germain, if he concludes that a return to England is not the right move for him.
Will Jude Bellingham Join Manchester City? - Emmanuel Odey - Bitter and Blue
Emmanuel looks at who the front runners really are in the Bellingham sweepstakes.
After signing England midfielder Kalvin Phillips for £45m last summer to replace outgoing captain Fernandinho, the club is now linked to his compatriot Bellingham who functions in a similar position. The Borussia Dortmund midfielder is turning heads with his performances at the moment as his maturity is well beyond his age.
An impressive goal for the German side in the Champions League against City only added fuel to the fire. In Phillips’ absence due to injury, Bellingham shone brightly for the Three Lions in the international break.
Initially, Liverpool were talked up as his ideal destination with Jurgen Klopp seen as an admirer. But attention has now shifted to United and City with claims that the Etihad Stadium will be his destination due to the steep transfer fee involved.
Jude Bellingham is hot property at the moment, with many clubs reportedly chasing his signature. Will the Borussia Dortmund star join Manchester City? https://t.co/yw6N4IyXPm pic.twitter.com/GHfUg2Ppgb— Bitter and Blue (@BitterandBlue1) September 26, 2022
From Haaland to Gordon: what happened to Next Generation 2017? - Marcus Christenson - The Guardian
Erling may be the ultimate shining star in a group of talented youngsters.
Hilariously, Berntsen says that Haaland was considered “too small and skinny” even at 15 and 16. It just shows that different players develop at different ages.
But not even Michael Yokhin, who picked Haaland for our Next Generation 2017, or Berntsen, could have predicted quite how good the Norwegian would become. The stats, as we all know, are staggering. At Molde he scored 20 goals in 50 games, at Red Bull Salzburg 29 in 27, at Dortmund 86 in 89 and he has started his Manchester City career with 14 in 10 games.
But Haaland is far from the only player out of the 60 to have done well. Other players on the list are Alphonso Davies, Vinícius Júnior, Ferrán Torres, Jadon Sancho and Pedro Neto.
Brazil legend Ronaldinho praises Man City ace as Erling Haaland admission made - Dan Brown - Manchester Evening News
Ronaldinho praises KDB, but a United target tries to emulate Haaland.
Manchester United transfer target Benjamin Sesko has revealed that he watches videos of Manchester City star Erling Haaland on YouTube.
Sesko was heavily linked with a move to Old Trafford during the summer transfer window, but the 19-year-old eventually agreed to join RB Leipzig next year. United pushed hard for the transfer to be made, with football director John Murtough holding a meeting with Sesko’s agent, Elvis Basanovic, in an attempt to broker a move.
The Slovenian scored 11 goals in 37 appearances across all competitions for Red Bull Salzburg last season. Sesko even scored against Liverpool in pre-season, a strike that went down very well with the United faithful.
Brazil legend Ronaldinho praises Man City ace as Erling Haaland admission made#MCFC https://t.co/qJME3GujmZ— Manchester City News (@ManCityMEN) September 26, 2022
How Southgate could revolutionise England with one change involving Foden! - Laura Graves - Man City Square
And finally... Laura looks at how Phil Foden could be the key to unlocking the Lions.
There are the counterattack opportunities that fall to England. However, it is the lack of creativity again which means that the front 3 must come so deep to create chances, that no one is able to get forward fast enough for.
There is one player that could change all of that. One player that could dictate from midfield in a way that would allow a front 3 to remain in position.
Not only is Foden England’s most creative forward, but he’s also the best passer of the ball, with the best vision. Bringing him into midfield would allow him to create chances and free up the front 3.
He’s the missing link between the back line and the front line – a desperate flaw in Southgate’s system.
This would mean a change in formation, a 4-3-3. With a large selection of defenders, most of which play in a back 4, there is no reason that this couldn’t work – with good coaching.
Didn’t lose, but still not impressed #ENGGER #MCFC— Laura (@Laws_ellen24601) September 26, 2022
‘He’s the missing link between the back line and the front line – a desperate flaw in Southgate’s system.’
How England could be revolutionised with Foden (via @Laws_ellen24601) https://t.co/TDdMWXcdz3
There you have it Cityzens. Just 5 days until the derby. Stay with us here at Bitter and Blue for all the latest form Sky Blue News.