Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has hailed 18-year-old winger Sam Edozie as ‘incredible’ after the teenager scored in a third consecutive pre-season game – but is urging fans and the media to remain ‘patient’ with the young starlet.
Edozie needed just three minutes to get on the scoresheet in Tuesday night’s friendly against Blackpool, with City going on to win 4-1. He had also already scored in warm-up matches against Preston and Barnsley last month.
London-born Edozie made the switch to Manchester in 2019 after previously playing in Millwall’s academy and is described in his bio on City’s official website as a ‘skillful, pacy winger’. Having glimpsed his talent this summer, fans will be keen to see more of him in the first-team in 2021/22.
“Like all of them, as a young talent having a special quality, a guy who gets to the box with the intention to score the goal is important for wingers,” Guardiola said as he reflected on Edozie’s latest outing, quoted by the Manchester Evening News.
“He’s an incredible young player, good pace. Be patient with him. With minutes they play good and this is important,” the City boss added.
Edozie wears City’s number 53 shirt and is in with a chance of making his official first-team debut on Saturday evening when the reigning Premier League champions face FA Cup holders Leicester in the Community Shield at Wembley.
The youngster was initially part of City’s Under-18 squad when he first arrived in 2019 and spent most of his time last season with the club’s Under-23 Elite Development Squad. He could be involved with the first-team this season, but don’t expect Guardiola to fully unleash him for a while.
Patience has long formed part of the manager’s strategy for developing young players. He was famously cautious not to ask too much too soon of Phil Foden, despite external clamours for the home-grown starlet to be first-team regular from the age of 17.
Foden has been given progressively more chances with each passing season, finishing the 2020/21 campaign with 50 appearances in all competitions and 16 goals.