Manchester City midfielder Fabian Delph has hailed the togetherness of the squad under manager Pep Guardiola, saying that the team spirit is at its peak.
Delph, signed by former City manager Manuel Pellegrino for £8m in 2015, has struggled with injuries during his time at the Etihad. But his return to action this season has been a positive eventuality, and the Englishman marked his return with a wonder-goal against Crystal Palace during their 5-0 thrashing of the Eagles.
City sit top of the Premier League table after an outstanding start to the campaign, winning all but one of their games so far. Speaking to Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday, Delph said he believes the squad is as strong as ever both on and off the pitch.
“The togetherness is there, it is definitely the strongest since I’ve been at the club.” he said.
“It is a young bunch of players, so everybody interacts perfectly, everybody gets on well on and off the pitch.”
“So I think with me scoring the goal, it was clear for everybody to see the togetherness that is there.”
“From pre-season it seemed to go that way, the new additions that came in obviously freshen up the squad, people have to adapt to each other. That happened really easy and everybody just seems to be getting on really well and gelling and you can definitely see that in the performances.”
“It is 14 months into it, we had the concepts from when the manager first came, they have stayed the same, the players have taken to it easily from pre-season until now.”
“The players that have come in have got their own individual qualities and I have been surprised at how well they have taken to the ways that the manager wants us to play.”
“He has got a lot of systems of ways in which he wants us to play and he makes a signal from the side of the pitch or at half-time he will tell us how we can do better in the second half.”
“And we know straight away what he wants us to do and we know how to do it.”
“It is brilliant for me, I am a guy who wants to learn and keep learning, that is one of the biggest reasons I came here. I have had a lot of managers over the years, so this was interesting and one that I am thoroughly enjoying.”
“It is different me playing at left-back, I have done it a few times in my career.”
Delph also played down reports that he could leave the club, after much speculation over the summer about his future.
“I was linked with quite a few teams, which was probably expected with the season that I had last season,” he said.
“I did not play [many] games and was injured a lot, so it would not have been surprising if I did move on to play games at another club.”
“But I have always wanted to stay here. I have worked so, so hard since [I was] a young kid to get to the top and I am not looking to run away from it. I’m here and willing to put every single bit of me on the line to try and get in the team and help my team-mates.”
“And luckily I am still here and scoring more.”