Date of Birth: 28th May 2000 (age 17)
Club: Manchester City Number: 47
“I will forgive if the players cannot get it right, but not if they do not try hard.”
– Pep Guardiola
Phil Walter Foden is the youngest I have written about. He is an English professional soccer player who plays for the Premier League club, Manchester City, and for the England U-18 team.
Phil Foden received media coverage after having won the FIFA U-17 World Cup Golden Ball Award in 2017. Foden signed for City from Reddish Vulcans JFC in 2006, when he was just six years old, and the man who discovered him has since earned himself a full-time position in the club’s academy, almost purely because of the size of the gem he unearthed. Towards the end of 2016, Phil Foden was asked to be a part of the matchday squad by manager, Pep Guardiola. Although Pep Guardiola believes that it is dangerous to say good things about young players, he thinks that Foden has a lot of potential and can achieve great things in the future.
Phillip Foden began his career like most soccer players do: on the bench. He was not chosen on the squad for many matches before making his debut as a substitute on 21 November 2017 in a Champions League game. By doing so, he became the fourth youngest soccer player to make an appearance in the Champions League. He broke another record a month later, when he became the youngest player to start a Champions League match. Pep Guardiola was exceptionally impressed by Foden’s performance in a pre-season match against Manchester United. Twelve minutes into the game against Manchester United, Phil Foden came up with a turn in front of Ander Hererra, which had everyone sitting up in their seats.
Foden is currently playing in England’s U18 team. Although his team was defeated in the UEFA Under-17 Championship, he managed to score a goal against Spain. In October of the same year, he scored twice in the FIFA U17 World Cup, also against Spain, as England won the competition. Foden was also named as the best player of the tournament.
Phil Foden is simply 17 years old. However, he is one of the few young players who has gained the respect of manager, Pep Guardiola. Pep had done extensive research on players like Foden before he came to City from FC Bayern Munich. As a member of the Manchester City squad, Foden gets the opportunity to play with famous soccer players: Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus, Leroy Sane, etc. Interacting and learning from players like these will be extremely beneficial for Foden in the future. Under the mentorship of Guardiola and many other Barcelona employees who have moved to City, Foden is bound to enhance his skills at his time with the club.