Manchester City FC 2017/18 Player Preview – Danilo

NASHVILLE, TN - JULY 29: Toby Alderweireld
NASHVILLE, TN - JULY 29: Toby Alderweireld /

2017/2018 Manchester City Player Previews

Danilo (Danilo Luiz Da Silva)

An unimpressive campaign from the lad at Madrid, but how will he fare this upcoming season at his new club?

A couple of weeks back, City unveiled the signing of Danilo from Real Madrid. Like Bernardo Silva, Danilo was a bit of a surprise, and to the dismay of some City fans. However, Danilo is a reinvigorated man. He had a failed experience at Real Madrid, largely due to them having the best right-back in the world… Danilo can’t be at fault for struggling to get in a Real Madrid side and having the lack of confidence in his limited amount of game time.

He has impressed this pre-season and it will be interesting to see how he fares this season.

Below I give a preview of the what is to come/what to expect from the Brazilian this upcoming season.

Danilo: Left-Back/Right-Back/Midfielder?

As previously mentioned, Danilo was a bit of a surprise signing to some City fans. However, looking back, he seems to be a perfect fit for our squad and the exact type of player Pep would like to see in his 11.

One can not forget that Danilo actually played in the Champions League Final in 2016. The Brazilian played a critical role and making some crucial interceptions and last-gasp tackles against Atletico Madrid.

Danilo was initially planned to be a back-up to Kyle Walker. However, Benjamin Mendy won’t be back for another week or two, possibly missing the first two games. At Madrid, he acted only as a back-up to Carvajal. However, during his time at Porto, Danilo was very impressive and slotted in the left-back, CB, RB, and also midfielder positions. Clearly, the man is versatile. His performances at Porto is what earned him a move over to the reigning best team in the world.

His versatile has obviously prompted Pep to experiment at slot him in the left-back role. In fact, Danilo played in that spot both games against Madrid and Tottenham and was very impressive. For a more in-depth analysis of his performance, view this article on his performance against Madrid. In summary, against Madrid, he looked solid in one-on-one situations, made some key tackles, and proved that he has a great turn of pace, beating Carvajal on two different occasions and leading to a great opportunity on goal. At Tottenham, he was also very impressive after threatening numerous times down the flank and also getting a couple of great chances — chances he probably should have scored, but it’s preseason and he’s a defender so he is forgiven at this point in time.

Now looking ahead to the 2017/18 season….

As stated above, Danilo can slot into probably one of three, maybe even four positions, but to start off the season he most definitely will be slotting into that left-back role as it is currently vacant. After a couple of great team performances in the 5-3-2 formation, Pep very well could select this formation to play against Brighton in our first match.

Essentially, our back line would look like this:

Danilo  ————- Otamendi ————- Kompany ————- Stones ———– Walker

It’s too difficult to predict the midfield at this moment, so I will not touch it. I don’t see Danilo starting at CB anytime soon, but he could very well play the left-back in a 4-5-1 or 4-1-4-1 formation. Similar to the above lineup it would look like this with just one omission:

Danilo  ——————– Otamendi ——————- Kompany —————– Walker

There is not much to go on regarding Danilo’s stats last season, and I expect Danilo to be a totally different player at City. He is playing amongst other Brazilians and looks to be having fun. The upcoming season, Danilo may not record an assist or goal every match, but he will be critical in the upcoming campaign in other ways. The speed and dribbling ability he will provide next to our existing midfielders will be a huge asset to us. With Mendy already having some injury problems (and had numerous issues last season), we could very well see a lot of Danilo on the left side of the defense. Expect him to start at West Ham tomorrow and against Brighton in the opening game of the season.

In terms of slotting into the midfield position, I don’t see this as something that will occur immediately. But as the season wears on, we could possibly see Fernandinho or Toure drop due to fitness or injury problems (Gundogan could be in the same position as well). Danilo could very well play the DM role; he has the confidence in possession and ability to dribble as well as defend the ball. Why not give it a shot? CDM is our next weakest position in terms of depth (Fernandinho and Yaya are aging, meanwhile Gundogan is not the best player to rely on at the moment).

Next: Manchester City: Girona will remove the need for the “B” team

All in all, don’t expect huge numbers from Danilo this season but expect plenty of playing time and him to play a critical role in our title campaign.

How do you think Danilo will play? Let us know on our Facebook and Twitter!