Kyle Walker: This teenager can step up in Kevin De Bruyne’s absence

Kyle Walker believes Manchester City teenager Phil Foden is ready to take the next step in his development with the Premier League champions this season – a timely endorsement given the news that Kevin De Bruyne faces an extended spell on the sidelines.

The playmaker injured his knee in training on Wednesday and is expected to be sidelined for up to four months and Foden, 18, may well prove to be the beneficiary of his team-mate’s misfortune.

Foden is also being linked with a potential call-up to the full England squad and World Cup defender Walker believes he will take both developments in his stride.

“Phil’s got a great attitude, [he is]a great player, and more importantly, he’s a great lad,” said Walker. “He wants to learn, he’s keen to listen. I’ve met a lot of young players throughout my career who’ve kind of got a chip on their shoulder but he’s definitely not one of them.

“He’s one of those who wants to learn and I think he shows that in his performances – he’s keen, he’s energetic, he’s keeping people on their toes really.”

“He’s been working hard – you can see he’s been working hard, he was even out in Russia [watching the World Cup as a spectator] so that’s how much he loves the game of football.”

City, already with victories over Chelsea, in the Community Shield, and Arsenal under their belts, open their home campaign against Huddersfield on Sunday.

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