BBC pundit Garth Crooks says Rodri has become as significant to Manchester City as Fernandinho was.

The Spaniard started his fifth Premier League campaign with the Citizens by scoring City’s third goal in their 3-0 win over Burnley at Turf Moor.

After scoring the final game of last season which ended up being one of the most important goals in the club’s history in their 1-0 win over Inter Milan in the Champions League final, the 27-year-old has found himself on the end of some significant praise from one pundit in particular.

Crooks hails Rodri’s significance

Burnley FC v Manchester City - Premier League
Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images

Written in his Team of the Week article for BBC Sport, Crooks had this to say about Rodri.

He said: “For years Manchester City were worried about how they were going to replace Fernandinho. Well, it took some time because of the imperious ability of the Brazilian, but they eventually found Rodri. 

“The Spain midfielder has become everything Fernandinho was to the club. His contribution to City completing the Treble, not to mention his winning goal in the Champions League final, is unquantifiable. 

“In Friday’s season-opening 3-0 win at Burnley, it was business as usual. No dramas, no fuss, but just another day at the office. What a player.”

Burnley FC v Manchester City - Premier League
Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images

After making 383 appearances for City, Fernandinho left the club at the end of the 2021/22 season as one of their most important players of the past decade.

With that in mind, to be likened to the legendary Brazilian in terms of his impact at the club and in the team, this is major praise for Rodri that Crooks has given here.

Last season saw the Spain international play more minutes in the Premier League than any other City player, which highlights how important he is for Pep Guardiola.

Looking back on the recent 3-0 win over Burnley, not only did Rodri score his first goal of the campaign after Erling Haaland’s first-half brace, the midfielder ended the game with the highest overall match rating in the City side, with SofaScore giving him a rating of 9.2/10.

This further highlights how much of a pivotal figure he is in the team and why this season is likely to be another one where Rodri will be playing regularly and helping his side regain the titles he helped them win last year.

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