Man City Player of the Season: Riyad Mahrez and Phil Foden suggest shock candidate to rival Erling Haaland

The Manchester City duo gave the award to a defender, as well as the free-scoring no.9.
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Riyad Mahrez and Phil Foden have named Nathan Ake as Manchester City’s co-player of the season alongside Erling Haaland.

The Norwegian was named in the running for the Premier League Player of the Year award this week and has already been crowned as the FWA Footballer of the Year after a record-breaking campaign. Haaland has scored 52 goals in all competitions in his maiden season in England and has set the record for the most goals from a player in an individual season, which currently stands at 36 and counting.

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It’s therefore no surprise that Haaland is up for player of the season, but asked who they felt was City’s best performer over the 2022/23 campaign, Mahrez and Foden threw in a curve ball.

“It’s out of Erling or Nathan Ake,” claimed Foden, on Sky Sports. “He’s always one of the best trainers and looks after himself, he’s professional. For me it’s difficult to pick one, they’re going to have it joint.”

While Ake may seem like a surprise choice, he has played a huge role for the champions this term, and fulfils a unique role in the team as he pushes in from left-back into centre-back.

The ex-Bournemouth man has made 38 appearances this season but has struggled with injuries at times and has played just two of the last six league matches due to a hamstring problem.

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Guardiola claimed earlier this year that Ake is a player who ‘doesn’t make mistakes’ and praised his consistency in January. “He played an incredible World Cup and I know when he is stable at home, happy, good mood - what a player,” he said. “He has had ups and downs in the past, had some injuries but I would say this is part of the process to realise what he needs – as he is still young – to be consistent.”

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