'I adore him!' - Pep Guardiola heaps praise on Ilkay Gundogan but midfielder's Man City future still in doubt
- Guardiola praises Gundogan
- Midfielder heading towards free agency
- Man City face Fulham on Sunday
WHAT HAPPENED? Gundogan, who was Guardiola's first signing as Manchester City manager, could be set to leave the club after seven years this summer. The German's contract expires at the end of the season and he has admitted he's not yet made a decision on where he'll play his football next season. Guardiola has spoken about Gundogan and made it clear just how highly he rates the midfielder.
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WHAT THEY SAID: Speaking to reporters, Guardiola said, "I love him. I adore him. I'm married, but I adore him! Ilkay is such an important player. Humanity, leading with silence - and yet when he talks everybody listens. He is a football player defined perfectly. An attacking midfielder with a sense of goal and assists. He is so intelligent in the moment and always in the right position. He can also play as a holding midfielder. Ilkay is an exceptional player in all senses.
"You can't win anything - you can't even dream it - unless you want to do it. You talk about Ilkay's experience. That doesn't mean what happened in the past will happen in the future but being there many times helps."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: It has been reported that Gundogan's wife Sara Arfaoui has grown tired of life in England and wants to relocate to another country next season. Barcelona could be a possible destination for the player as the Catalan club have shown interest in signing him but a deal has not been agreed yet.
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WHAT NEXT FOR MANCHESTER CITY? Guardiola's side will be next seen in action on Sunday when they take on Fulham in the Premier League.