Manchester City midfield lynchpin Rodri has shined as the Premier League champions opened their campaign in style. The treble winners would beat newly promoted Burnley to kick off the new season.
The European champions hero of last season picked up where he left off to begin the 23/24 campaign. He was all over the pitch in a display that reminded the football world of just how good he is, if it needed reminding at all.
His all-round performance highlighted the value he holds to Pep Guardiola’s squad. Without a doubt he is now City’s most important player. Numerous times in the first half Rodri was there to bail the champions out. Some unusually sloppy passes at the back left City exposed. As usual it was City’s midfield general on hand to tidy up the mess. He also set up City’s opener with his cushioned header allowing Erling Haaland to fire home.
Rodri’s game by numbers vs Burnley:
125 touches (most)
97.3% passing accuracy (107/110)
15 final ⅓ entries (most)
8x possession won
5 duels won
5 tackles made
A goal and and assist in a top flight league match for the first time in his career. 👏 pic.twitter.com/4PYVq6shRA
— Squawka Live (@Squawka_Live) August 11, 2023
As the second half wore on, Rodri showcased his ability to get forward. It was already well known after his heroics in last season’s Champions League final. Rodri ventured forward more in the second half and forced two saves out of James Trafford in the Burnley goal. He finally got the goal his performance deserved in the 75th minute. It capped a dominant display from the midfielder.
Rodri has begun the season right where he left off at the end of City’s treble-winning campaign. If his performance against Burnley is the marker for his season, he may go up another gear in the 23/24 campaign.