Introducing Brahim Diaz: Pep Guardiola's Next Gem
Pep Guardiola has another gem of a talent on his hands at Manchester City and he goes by the name Brahim Diaz.
The 17-year old youngster is in the City first-team squad for the trip to Swansea City and could be in line for his debut. Guardiola has already introduced a host of youngsters into the first-team fold, including Tosin Adarabioyo, Pablo Maffeo, Angelino and Aleix Garcia - the latter making his debut for the club in the weekend win over Bournemouth.
But out of all the young talent coming out of the £200m City Football Academy, Brahim is the most exciting and it's only a matter of time before he makes his mark on the first-team.
Diaz hasn't been a stranger to training with the City first-team, he's been in and around the first-team squad for some time. He has also been a shining light at youth level, playing a vital role in City U-18's winning the U18 Premier League title as well as reaching the FA Youth Cup final, a game in which the Spaniard scored in.
City signed Diaz from Malaga at 14 years age and there was already a feeling that he could be a special player. He has been a revelation at youth level for City, putting in a series of superb performances for the U-18's and the EDS (U23's).
For a few years now, City have been stocked with incredibly bright talents - the likes of Denis Suarez and Marcos Lopes were destined for greatness at the club but have subsuqently been moved on.
However with Diaz, City are taking their time with him and he is benefitting from the new philosophy at the club. There is now an emphasis on youth at the club and opportunities are available in the first-team - Guardiola has made that quite clear by promoting a number of young players into the first-team squad.
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In terms of his playing style, Diaz is everything you would expect a Guardiola attacking player to be. A left-footed attacker, e is able to play as a number ten as well as come off the right flank in the same way a certain Lionel Messi did in his early days at Barcelona. A whole host of youngsters get the Messi comparison, but you only need to watch the following goal scored by Brahim to see the obvious similarities.
He completely and utterly sold three defenders down the river; evidence of his wonderful qualities with the ball.
Another one of his finest goals came against Manchester United in a U23 derby and it was an absolute pearler.
Guardiola demands work ethic from his players and Brahim has that in abundance, he has no problem pressing and harrying defenders.
Clearly he is still developing but Pep Guardiola has an absolute star in the making in Brahim Diaz and City fans are in for an absolute treat if the youngster is involved in the Capital One Cup tie with Swansea.
Words by Josh Lawless
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