Manchester City boss Guardiola refusing to stand in way of young duo
Pep Guardiola will not prevent local youngsters Taylor Harwood-Bellis and Tommy Doyle from attending games alongside Manchester City's away support.
The academy graduates were on Tuesday filmed singing and celebrating in the away end during the Citizens’ dominant 3-1 victory over rivals Manchester United at Old Trafford in the Carabao Cup semi-final first-leg.
Both starlets had turned out for the senior team in last weekend’s FA Cup win over Port Vale, with the Stockport-born pair also dyed-in-the-wool City fans.
The duo helped City win 4-1 at the Etihad Stadium, with Harwood-Bellis starting as part of Guardiola’s defence.
Goals from Oleksandr Zinchenko, Sergio Aguero, Harwood-Bellis and Phil Foden booked City’s place in the fourth round.
They have previously been spotted backing their senior team-mates at Everton’s Goodison Park, which Guardiola described at the time as “pretty cool”.
However, it’s understood City will now remind them of their ‘ambassadorial responsibilities’ – especially as more fans around them are using their phones to share footage of them.
Central defender Harwood-Bellis, 17, has four senior outings this term, and video on Twitter showed him getting into the spirit of things with City’s 3,000 followers at the Theatre of Dreams.
Doyle, 18, is a midfielder being tipped for big things at the Etihad, with two senior outings so far, and is the grandson of former City legends Mike Doyle and Glyn Pardoe.
Guardiola was regularly a ball-boy at Barcelona, before making the first-team breakthrough at Camp Nou, so has plenty of empathy and admiration for City’s young professionals mixing in with regular supporters.
The Premier League champions travel to Aston Villa this Sunday and will be looking to ensure the current 14-point gap to runaway leaders Liverpool does not further increase.
They will travel to the Midlands in a confident mood though, with a four-match winning run under their belt.
City still sit third in the table, but they can climb ahead of Leicester City if they fail to beat Southampton at King Power Stadium.