News now: Pep Guardiola has unearthed a priceless new Man City attacking threat

Erling Haaland's absence on the Manchester City teamsheet must have delighted Dayot Upamecano.

The Bayern defender was caught in possession by Jack Grealish at the Etihad last season and had to witness Haaland cross superbly for Bernardo Silva to score. The Norwegian was then thoroughly seated by the Norwegian in the second leg of their Champions League quarterfinal. He won't want to see those two games again.
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The fact that Upamecano would be getting blitzed by an 18-year-old pocket rocket flying past him to help Manchester City find another way to score was certainly something he could not have predicted. Rico Lewis appears to be the one who will capture you if Haaland fails.

Of course, it was just a friendly, but how you perform in front of large crowds and against strong competition may still be a true test of skill and character. Lewis caught the attention in a friendly match against the same opponents in the United States last summer, then dazzled in Barcelona in August to persuade Pep Guardiola that he was ready for duty.

Also read: Man City's victory over Bayern Munich proved Joshua Kimmich correct.

After the World Cup, Lewis shocked many by earning a spot in the starting lineup. If it was any indication of his scary potential that he taught John Stones how to transition from defense to midfield, the surprises have not stopped there. In order to prove that he can succeed there, Guardiola continued to play Lewis as a No. 8 ahead of the defensive midfielder, and against Bayern he was excellent in that position.

Stones had already produced a shot against Bayern with a bursting run into the area on Bernardo Silva's underlap, and Lewis quickly improved on that. Running onto a Kyle Walker ball on the inside right, Lewis avoided Upamecano and, despite riding his luck, found Julian Alvarez in the box, where James McAtee assisted Julian Alvarez's parried shot.

The teenager put on yet another outstanding performance by stopping Kingsley Coman's shot on the edge of his own box toward the end of the first half and then pressing Upemecano to the point where City almost added a second goal when Yann Sommer stumbled while in possession in the Bayern goal. The Blues may discover that this fullback is the box-to-box midfielder they've always had.

This was a performance that shows Lewis will be firmly in the first team plans for the upcoming season, wherever he plays. Given that the flexible star can fit into a variety of positions, his influence to the side will continue to increase despite having already had a number of outings and starts.

Lewis appears to be priceless for City, who have raised hundreds of millions of pounds by selling local players.

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