Kyle Walker says he is frustrated by his recent lack of playing time but is instead focusing his efforts on helping Manchester City during their treble bid.
England international Walker has long been an important player for Pep Guardiola at the Etihad, winning four Premier League titles, but has dropped out of the starting XI picture of late after his manager changed tactics.
Guardiola put doubt on Walker’s City future at the start of April by claiming he couldn’t play in his new 3-2-4-1 system – since the international break, the former Spurs full back has made just five appearances and started three games against Leicester, Sheffield United and more recently Arsenal.
“I have struggled sometimes when things are not going your way outside of football or a bit of bad form,” Walker said.
“I always think go back to the basics – what got you to your happy place.
“Things are out of your control sometimes. Every one of us down there thinks they should be playing.
“It’s how you react. I’m the worst, I hate not playing. But with my experience and age I think, ‘OK, I’ll park the manager to one side and be here for the team’.
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“And I’ll make sure the lads have my backing. Whether that’s me shouting in the dressing room beforehand, or like the last game of last season against Aston Villa. I was the one shouting and running up the touchline as it meant something to me.
“I needed to do what I can as one of the captains to make sure the other guys got the victory we needed.”
John Stones has featured heavily in a midfield role alongside Rodri with a back three of Manuel Akanji, Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake. However, Walker performed well in the 4-1 victory over Arsenal on Wednesday, keeping Brazilian attacker Gabriel Martinelli quiet.
City are next in action on Sunday when they face Fulham at Craven Cottage. They can overtake Premier League leaders Arsenal, who play Chelsea on Tuesday night, by a point with victory over the Cottagers.
On this edition of 90min’s Definitive European Power Rankings, part of the 90min podcast network, Sean Walsh and Jack Gallagher discuss the top 10 teams from across the continent after a busy week of football.
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