The first half of last season feels like a long time ago.
As unbelievable as it seems now, Leroy Sane took a while to adjust to life in the Premier League.
However, the German winger has carried the momentum he built up after Christmas last campaign into the new term and his stats reinforce his dramatic improvement.
Only Kevin De Bruyne has provided more assists in the Premier League this season and Sane already has 12 goals to his name in all competitions.
The 22-year-old has made life difficult for most right-backs with Kieran Trippier and Hector Bellerin both being made to look particularly helpless when facing Man City.
However, one has proven himself capable of nullifying the threat of Sane.
Step forward Timothy Fosu-Mensah.
The 20-year-old is on loan at Crystal Palace from Man United and has succeeded in keeping Sane quiet twice this season.
Man City’s in-form star praised Fosu-Mensah when speaking to Jamie Redknapp for Sky Sports.
“Who has been your toughest opponent in the Premier League?” Redknapp asked.
“It was before when I was playing against Kyle Walker,” Sane diplomatically replied.
“And Crystal Palace’s right-back Timothy Fosu-Mensah, I have played against him twice this season, and even last season, he had me really well under control and I told him how happy I was to play against him.”
Jose Mourinho would be wise to take note.
Antonio Valencia has done a superb job for Man United since he was converted to a right-back from a right-winger a few seasons back.
But Ecuadoran will turn 33 before the start of next season; perhaps he could mentor Fosu-Mensah while sharing playing duties with the young Dutch international?
Mourinho has recently shown faith in Scott McTominay, why not blood another youngster into the first team next season?
Either way, Fosu-Mensah can be proud of his efforts against Sane this season and should use the German’s kind words as motivation to keep improving.
We can’t wait until the two meet again… in a Manchester derby maybe?
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