It was one of the most surprising notifications I had received on my phone for a long time. It honestly came out of nowhere. Cancelo’s loan move was something which even a seasoned punter would not have sniffed at. My first thoughts were of thinking about the situation behind the scenes. Rarely have we seen City take such decisions in a hurry. Normally, City would have waited until the summer and would have dealt with Cancelo. What had happened that City had to take such a drastic decision towards the end of a transfer window?
Then, reports began to flow by that Cancelo had a training ground spat with Pep Guardiola. Some of the reports further stated that the relationship between Pep and Cancelo is now beyond repair. There were also reports of Cancelo being a disruptive figure in the dressing room. All of these things meant that Cancelo had to be sent away as fast as possible. In my words, Cancelo was now like an annoying Can who had to kicked down the road.
We cannot blame City for this as well. There have been instances in the past where Cancelo had similar spats with coaches. Generally, Cancelo is not someone who is happy to bide his time on the bench. He wants to play each and every minute. But, Pep Guardiola picks his teams based on what he sees in training and your form. So, it was right on Pep’s part to bench Cancelo. To be honest, Ake has been our standout player this season. He has been defensively perfect and he has also carried out Pep’s instructions to the dot. It would have been out right unfair to bench Ake in favour of Cancelo.
I will never understand why Cancelo did not think about it from Ake’s perspective. In the entirety of last season, Cancelo played more minutes than even Ederson. All this while, Ake was patiently waiting on the bench while improving on his craft. Why can’t Cancelo do the same now. Why can’t he treat this as an opportunity to get even better and challenge Ake for his position.
When Cancelo arrived, Walker was dropped for a few games. Walker did not sulk the like Cancelo. He worked hard and became better. All of the top teams love to refresh their squads from time to time and introduce competition to make sure their players don’t become complacent. If Cancelo continues with his current attitude, then it will be almost impossible for him to settle down at any of the top teams in the world.
This decision would have sent out an even sterner message to the rest of the dressing room that unhappiness and sulking will not be tolerated. If you want to be at City, you must accept your time on the bench with happiness. No player is above the team spirit and bonding in the team. If it feels like someone is destroying the attitude and creating a bad atmosphere then he will be kicked out. It will not matter for one second who that player is and what is his reputation. The team is bigger than any individual personality and anything that undermines the team spirit will never be tolerated.