Real Madrid midfielder proves Pep Guardiola wrong

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Four Manchester City academy graduates were in the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund. Jamie Bynoe-Gittens, Felix Nmecha, and Jadon Sancho were from the German along with the Madrid midfielder, Brahim Diaz. All four of the finalists were part of Man City’s academy. Nmecha left City in 2021 to join Wolfsburg and had a brilliant spell there. Jadon Sancho moved to Dortmund before his disappointing term at Manchester United.

After a fallout with United’s manager, Erik Ten Hag, Sancho left for Dortmund on loan. Brahim Diaz spent a few years at the Etihad with City’s first team before moving on loan to AC Milan. However, Diaz faced a similar Sancho situation with the Man City manager. Diaz made 15 appearances for the Blues and amazed the fans with his display. The Moroccan international got the Etihad chanting his name after scoring his only two goals for City against Fulham in the Carabao Cup.

The fallout with Pep Guardiola

While Diaz became part of the first team, he was competing with Phil Foden for a starting spot. The Madrid midfielder got only four starts for City and all in the League Cup. Diaz played an average of 27 minutes in his 15 appearances for the club. He had a good relationship with the City manager, however, he felt like he deserved more game time. While Foden waited and kept his faith in Guardiola, Diaz told the manager that he wanted to play more.

Additionally, when the Moroccan midfielder’s contract was expiring in 2019, he chose not to sign an extension and Guardiola would not give him more or less minutes because of such a situation. Diaz was given two options of either signing the extension or leaving but Guardiola wouldn’t change the position of the game.

While speaking about Diaz’s situation, the Manchester City manager said,

“My advice is if he doesn’t want to stay, he has to leave. The case of Brahim is very simple: we want him to stay, we want to extend his contract for four or five years and we’ll do absolutely everything to keep him here but, as I said before, it’s in his hands.”

The Moroccan chose to leave and got a deal from the La Liga giants during the January transfer window. After Diaz’s high-profile move to Real Madrid, Guardiola made certain statements regarding the whole situation. The City boss said that he didn’t want players who did not want to stay at City to achieve what they wanted to achieve. Although the midfielder’s decision to leave was not wrong, he had a tough first season at Madrid. Furthermore, he spent the next three years on loan with Inter Milan, which happened to be a successful spell. Diaz returned to Madrid not only as a greater player but also as a Serie A champion.

Brahim Diaz for Real Madrid this season

The Moroccan international was brilliant for the Champions League winners during this campaign. Diaz scored eight goals and provided eight assists in 31 league appearances. Additionally, his goals against Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana and against RB Leipzig in the Champions League round of 16 were game changers. A Champions League medal for the Moroccan will make him feel that his decision to exit Man City was right. Moreover, with the 24-year-old’s contract lasting until 2027, it will be exciting to see what more Diaz can do for the club.

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