Man City 2017-18 player ratings: De Bruyne, Aguero, Sane & every squad member ranked

ShareClose Comments
Goal's Manchester City correspondent Sam Lee rates each player's contribution to a fine season, that has seen Pep Guardiola's men win a double

  1. Ederson - 9

    Ederson, then 23, was tasked with succeeding where an experienced international like Claudio Bravo failed, and came for a hefty fee for a goalkeeper too. The pressure was on the Brazilian from the outset but he has been a revelation in goal, displaying wonderful distribution and a calmness under pressure that has been key to City's entire game plan.
  2. Claudio Bravo - 6

    Claudio Bravo has had to make do with games in the domestic cups this season, and one Champions League dead rubber, such was his disappointing first campaign in England and the performances of Ederson. The Chilean did play a big role in City's Carabao Cup win and looked more dependable than he did last season, but there have still been shaky moments and not much to suggest City could cope with a long-term injury to Ederson in the future.
  3. Kyle Walker - 8

    Kyle Walker was another player with question marks around him when he signed for a fee upwards of £50m last summer. His delivery was questioned and Mauricio Pochettino insisted that his best days had been spent at Tottenham. Yet Walker confounded those critics and has had a fine season at City. The England man has taken his game to a new level and he looks set to be an important member of the squad in years to come.
  4. Danilo - 7

    A difficult season to categorise. City were insistent that the Brazilian was signed, in part, because he can provide cover at left-back, but he hardly ever looked comfortable there and even with Benjamin Mendy and Fabian Delph injured he only filled in for a handful of games. That said, his best game in the position probably came in the Carabao Cup final. At right-back he has had ups and downs. Usually solid, and no major howlers, but not as good as Walker. 
  5. Vincent Kompany - 8

    For so long it looked like another season would pass Vincent Kompany by thanks to injury, but he has proven his value at key moments. Was in and out of the side up until February but Pep Guardiola trusted him in big matches, and not just when his physical attributes would be needed. Starred in the Carabao Cup final and then against Arsenal again a few days later, and was also selected for big matches against Liverpool and Manchester United. Not as good on the ball as his defensive partners but is obviously still valued by Guardiola, and his resilience is alway worthy of extra credit.

     

  6. Nicolas Otamendi - 9

    Probably the most improved City player in the past couple of years. Nicolas Otamendi was the one constant at centre-back during the opening months of the season as Kompany and John Stones struggled with injuries. Guardiola labelled the Argentine "Superman" and without him it is tempting to suggest City would not have established their lead at the top of the table. Has improved immeasurably while on the ball, and indeed he has played more passes than any player in the Premier League. Formidable in the air and much better in the one-on-one duels. Some high-profile mistakes in big games in April will be highlighted, but his fine performances across the rest of the season cannot be denied. 
  7. John Stones - 7

    A season of two halves. Stones looked superb between August and December, putting in consistently solid performances that made all previous criticism seem premature. The 23-year-old looked strong and composed whether with the ball or without, and he struck up a formidable partnership with Otamendi. Since returning from an injury in January, however, he has struggled for both form and fitness. When back in the side he has looked unsure, committing the kind of mistakes that have drawn so much scepticism in the past. In recent weeks he has been out of the side due to a number of different fitness concerns. The 2018-19 campaign could be crucial.
  8. Aymeric Laporte - 7

    You get the sense Aymeric Laporte is still bedding into life at City. Has had some impressive games and some not-so impressive since joining the club in January, but has shown his usefulness to Guardiola in certain big matches, particularly when the Catalan has needed the versatility to play centre-back, left-back, or a combination of the two. Has a fine range of passing, has looked strong defensively at times and should be better next season.
  9. Eliaquim Mangala - 7

    Eliaquim Mangala was nearly sold last summer and only played a handful of games for City before being loaned to Everton in January, and it's clear he is not the right man for Guardiola. But in truth he hardly put a foot wrong when called upon, which was both important and impressive given many expected the worst when Stones and then Kompany got injured over Christmas. 
  10. Benjamin Mendy - 7

    A mark of even seven out of 10 may seem high for a player who only played five games before his knee injury but credit is due for the role Benjamin Mendy has had in fostering an impressive dressing room mentality at the Etihad. He has been branded a £50m cheerleader but his presence in the early months of the season, even during his rehabilitation, helped bring together the City squad. That should not be overlooked, given Guardiola felt he had a lack of leaders and an overall shy squad during his first campaign in charge. Mendy looked impressive when in the side and that is the level he will hope to get back to now he is fit again, but it is his role away from the pitch that has had a bigger impact on City's fine season.
  11. Fabian Delph - 8

    Fabian Delph rejected a move to Stoke last summer as he believed he would get his opportunity at City, although you wouldn't have found many people who thought that was a good decision at the time. Yet he has had a major role in City's season as a stand-in left-back, covering for the absence of Mendy not by flying up the touchline and putting in crosses, but by coming into midfield and helping to dominate matches. The former Aston Villa man spent a couple of months out of the side at the turn of the year thanks to injury and suspension but he is back in the side now and is playing as well as he did in the first part of the season. Another player who has barely put a foot wrong, which is especially impressive given he has had to get used to a new and unique role.
  12. Oleksandar Zinchenko - 7

    Oleksandar Zinchenko is another player who was asked to play out of position to fill in at left-back, usually when Delph was unavailable. The initial experiment in the Carabao Cup game against Wolves was hardly impressive, as the 21-year-old looked nervous on the ball and was caught out defensively. But he visibly grew in confidence the more he played in the position and with each passing game he looked more and more at home. He was generally given games that required as little defending as possible, allowing him to focus on contributing to the attack, and though he has been caught in the transition between his midfield role and his left-back role more than Delph ever has been, the Ukrainian has generally been dependable.
  13. Yaya Toure - 6

    In truth Yaya Toure has hardly had a look in this season, for one reason or another, but he is set for an emotional farewell tour in the coming weeks as he is handed late cameo appearances and maybe even a start against Brighton, where he will get a heartfelt send-off after the final whistle. It was clear when he played earlier in the season that he cannot replicate Fernandinho's all-action role at the back of the midfield, but now the title is won he should have plenty of opportunities to show his class in a less pressurised environment, as he did against Swansea on Sunday.
  14. Fernandinho - 9

    One of the most important players in City's season. Fernandinho's presence at the back of the midfield, winning the ball back and using it shrewdly, has allowed the players all around him to flourish. The Brazilian is another player who has probably had the best season of his career, and given he has been asked to play essentially every game that is testament not only to his quality but his durability and mentality, too. City are pursuing Jorginho to be Fernandinho's long-term replacement and the Italy international will have some job on his hands.
  15. Ilkay Gundogan - 8

    Another very difficult season to categorise. Ilkay Gundogan has, at times, received a lot of criticism from his own fans, the charge being that he rarely makes a difference in big games. In those instances, however, it would be fair to say his biggest flaw is not being David Silva or Kevin De Bruyne, the two best players in his position in the Premier League. At times Gundogan has stood in for Silva and shone, particularly in tricky games against Napoli and Tottenham. At other times he has not been able to take control of games like his two more illustrious team-mates, but overall he has made an impressive contribution to City's title winning campaign, especially given he only returned from a serious injury in September, meaning he was short of full match fitness until the start of 2018.
  16. Kevin De Bruyne - 10

    The star man of City's campaign. Kevin De Bruyne has put in one of the most stunning individual campaigns in Premier League history, and all for the good of his team-mates. The Belgian has displayed a remarkable appreciation of what is required of him by Guardiola; he always seems to find himself in space, ready to do damage to the opposition. He has chipped in with some breathtaking goals and assists, as well as some more inconsequential flicks and turns in the midfield, and has, quite simply, been a joy to watch.
  17. David Silva - 10

    David Silva has always been a key man for City but this season his performances have piqued the attention of those who have previously taken his brilliance for granted. The Spaniard completely understands what is required of him by Guardiola, which is why he has regularly found himself in the right position to either get on the scoresheet himself or set somebody else up. His performance level has been arguably higher than ever this season, and it is hard to remember him having one bad game. That is quite a feat in itself, but when you consider that he has been splitting his time between Manchester and Valencia since December to help look after his young son it really highlights not just his pure footballing ability but his mental strength, too.
  18. Phil Foden - 8

    The mark of eight out of 10 is not exclusively a reflection of the quality of Phil Foden's performances, but also of the fact he has managed to break into such a talented team at the age of just 17. Although given his exploits at the U17 World Cup, eight would probably be a low score.

    Foden has not looked out of place when called upon by Guardiola, either from the bench or from the start, and that cannot really be overlooked given his age. He has one assist to his name, too, although it highlights the flaws with that particular stat that he'll get more credit for a simple five-yard pass to Aguero, who rifled the ball in off the bar from 25 yards, than he will for the mazy run and pin-point cross that Jesus headed meekly into the hands of the goalkeeper. Has clearly got a lot to offer this team and will hope for even more opportunities next season.

  19. Brahim Diaz - 7

    Eighteen-year-old Spaniard Brahim Diaz has also broken into the first team picture this season and has shown glimpses of his ability. In the youth teams he has played in a similar central role to Foden, but has almost always been used out wide when brought on as a late substitute by Guardiola. Had seemed a little nervous in his first few appearances of the season but has looked more and more confident the more he has played. Has not been quite as eye-catching as Foden but he can certainly be happy with his contributions.
  20. Bernardo Silva - 7

    As with Foden's score, Bernardo Silva's mark of 7 is relative to his ability and experience. The Portugal international has had a solid debut season; after enduring something of a slow start he has looked more at home as the campaign has gone on, and will be expected to build on that next year. He always looks incredibly tidy in possession and is capable of wreaking havoc when cutting in from the right-hand side, although does sometimes slow the play down a little while City are on the attack. In his defence, he was signed to play in one of the midfield roles but has been used almost exclusively in the forward line, and it will be interesting to see how he is used next season.
  21. Raheem Sterling - 8

    Raheem Sterling's goals have been crucial for City this season, especially late strikes against Bournemouth, Huddersfield and Southampton. He is on a career high 22 goals for the campaign and has shown a huge improvement in his overall performances, joining in with the build-up play outside the area and always seeming to be in the right place to apply a simple finish. He has admitted he struggles a little more when he is given time to think about his finish, which may explain some high profile misses, but at 23 he is progressing as well as could be expected, and could well be even better next year.
  22. Leroy Sane - 8

    Leroy Sane has built on his impressive debut campaign and he is already one of the most breathtaking players in the Premier League. Having struggled for opportunities in the opening weeks of the season he was charged with providing the width in City's attacks once Mendy got injured, and he has carried out that role well all season, even if his individual actions fluctuate. In recent weeks he has been in fine form, though across the season he has had his ups and downs. When he is on his game few players of any age can match his high points, and once he cuts out the lows, or at least make them less common, he will be one of the very best in Europe.
  23. Gabriel Jesus - 7

    Gabriel Jesus' season has been hampered by the knee injury he picked up in December, but up until that point he did not seem to be performing as well as he did in his first few months with the team in 2017, and since he has returned he has not seemed to be in the goal-scoring groove. Guardiola hailed his performance at Chelsea at the end of September, a victory that gave City a platform for the rest of the season, and the Catalan started him ahead of Aguero at Old Trafford in December, too, so the striker clearly brings a lot to the team even when he's not scoring. But given Aguero's improvement this season the bar has been raised even higher, and the Brazilian will be hoping to find his rhythm in the final weeks of the season, to carry that into the World Cup and beyond.
  24. Sergio Aguero - 9

    Sergio Aguero rose to the challenge when charged with improving his game during Guardiola's first season in charge, and over the past few months he has got even better. The Argentine and Guardiola have not always been sure of each other but the City boss is now delighted with the striker's contributions, both inside the box and out. The most impressive thing about Aguero is that he has added so much more to his game in the past two seasons but has continued scoring as many goals as ever; he had already notched up 30 before suffering the knee injury that curtailed his season in March.