Pep Guardiola eager for Phil Foden's Man City return after England heroics

BIRMINGHAM -- Pep Guardiola was delighted for England Under-17s World Cup hero Phil Foden and believes he will have a big future at Manchester City.

Foden scored twice in England's 5-2 win over Spain in the final and was then awarded the Golden Ball trophy for player of the tournament.

The Stockport-born midfielder played for City during their preseason tour to the United States and Guardiola suggested he would have been involved in the midweek victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers in the League Cup.

The Spaniard could have recalled him but said he will have gained invaluable experience from the World Cup success in India.

Guardiola couldn't watch the game, which was at the same time as City's 3-2 win over West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League, and joked at his news conference: "What position did he play? Because when he's coming back I'm going to play him in this position.

"Phil has been with us since the beginning of the season and played unbelievable against Manchester United and Real Madrid. He trains with us every single day. He's just 17 but he is a player in our squad.

"He's in the locker room every day with the guys -- it's the best way to learn from the experienced guys that have played at a high level. It's so important for Manchester City that he is playing in a high level.

"He's played a World Cup -- England will be World Champions in that age. When that guy will grow and play in a World Cup in the future, he has lived that situation before and knows what he has to do."

Borussia Dortmund recalled former City winger Jadon Sancho from the tournament but Guardiola said the experience was more important for his development than playing for City's second string.

"If he was going to play every weekend he would have stayed but maybe he would have played in the second team that month and it is better to play in the World Cup against Spain, Brazil, all the African teams and see how the situation is there," he added.

"They don't compete realistically in the second team so for all the English players the big experience was important."

Guardiola also said it could be a major step for the England team and he believes they could start to compete for major trophies, particularly with the England under-20s also winning their age group World Cup.

"Big congratulations to the manager, all the staff and the players because for English football, they need that," he said.

"It is the step they need. It happened in Spain. Spain was always last-16, quarterfinals -- they arrived in the semifinals and since then they have won every time. That's why it is so important."