Belfast Telegraph

Guardiola well aware of Sterling value at Manchester City

By Andy Hampson

Pep Guardiola is backing Raheem Sterling to deliver plenty of goals for Manchester City this season - starting with today's visit to Bournemouth. England forward Sterling shone in wider attacking roles last term, and could get a run in the central positions this season.

The 22-year-old came off the bench to score City's equaliser in Monday's 1-1 Premier League draw with Everton on Monday and also went close with a couple of other opportunities.

Sterling also netted in three of City's four pre-season games and City boss Guardiola wants to see more of that finishing ability.

Guardiola, who recently criticised his team for not taking enough of their chances, said: "In the pre-season last season Raheem played all the time out wide, and this season, since the pre-season game against Real Madrid in the second half, he has played more as a number 10 behind the striker.

"He is so dangerous in that position. I like him to sit there closer to the middle because he commits the central defenders. He is so aggressive in the small spaces.

"In the last four or five games, he scored a goal per game. Hopefully the goal he scored in the last game can help his confidence. He can say, 'I'm going to score a goal'," he added.

Belfast Telegraph

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