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Pep Guardiola has admitted he was not convinced by Rodri’s successful penalty against Tottenham, and once again hinted that goalkeeper Ederson could become Manchester City’s point shooting specialist.
City have a low hit rate from 12 yards since the start of last season and currently do not have a designated receiver, with Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne injured. They have lost eight of their last 18, with Ilkay Gundogan the most recent to ruin his lines against Liverpool.
Guardiola had previously hinted that Ederson could solve that problem and the goalkeeper seemed to want responsibility when City won a penalty in a 3-0 win over Spurs. He took a step forward, but was sent back by Bernardo Silva, as Rodri sent the ball past Hugo Lloris.
But the French goalkeeper gave him a hand and left Guardiola unconvinced.
He said: “I am so delighted for Rodri, for having the courage and responsibility to take it, but the take was not good. I have to reflect.
“I have the feeling, with the Champions to come, Everton, this type of situation, when you fail, it is very difficult. We do not have a real specialist to take penalties. That is the reality.”
Ederson would then go on to help Gundogan with a 70-yard pass, and with the penalty issue far from resolved, Guardiola also admitted that his goalkeeper will soon have the opportunity he has been waiting for.
“If he can play that pass from 70 yards, he can throw from 12,” he said. “The quality of the shot, Ederson is the best, I know. But taking a penalty is completely different, it’s another specialty, especially here.”
The Brazilian goalkeeper has never taken a penalty in his professional career, but last November he said that he trains regularly and feels like the best penalty taker on the City squad.
He said: “I don’t train a lot of free throws. I trained penalties and when I was playing for Ribeirao I made some free kicks, but that is now the past. I am the best penalty taker but I am not the one chosen to take them! “