The international break may have come at the perfect time for Manchester City after several of their key players hit form while representing their respective countries.
Like many of the other Premier League‘s big-hitters, City struggled to gain any real momentum before this most recent break in the domestic calendar, winning just three of their seven opening games in the top-flight.
Following their heavy 5-2 defeat to Leicester in September, City have looked sluggish and have since lost ground to the Foxes, Tottenham and Liverpool at the top of the table.
Ferran Torres bagged a hat-trick in Spain’s 6-0 demolition job on Germany on Tuesday night
Having rescued a point against champions Liverpool before the international break, Guardiola was given time to go away and think how to get his side clicking again after several lacklustre performances over the past two months.
But while he was doing that, his players that were called up for international duty may have provided him with some much-needed answers.
Ferran Torres smashed a hat-trick past Germany while Rodri also got on the scoresheet in Spain’s 6-0 demolition job of Joachim Low’s side on Tuesday.
Ruben Dias also grabbed his first two goals for Portugal, with his second coming in the dying seconds to seal victory against Croatia in their Nations League clash.
Torres will be hoping to help ease the goal burden back at City, who have struggled up front
Guardiola’s men have managed to score just four goals in 360 Premier League minutes
While Raheem Sterling is yet to feature after missing both of England’s games against the Republic of Ireland and Belgium with a slight knock, the international break appears to have worked out well for Guardiola and his plans heading into a hectic festive period.
But what can Guardiola take from this and will his Nations League hotshots be able to continue their form and propel City back up the table to familiar territory?
Here, Sportsmail takes a look at City’s season so far, what can change and what is ahead for the four-time Premier League champions.
What’s gone wrong so far?
After missing out on the chance to sign Lionel Messi this summer, it feels like it’s gone a bit flat at City.
While a season-opening win against Wolves at Molineux was a good start, Guardiola and Co quickly came crashing back to earth when Brendan Rodgers’ Foxes side ran riot at the Etihad, putting five past them in an emphatic win for Leicester.
It was a big wake up call for City but the defeat was only the beginning of their problems. The lack of a proper pre-season has led to multiple injuries with players being run ragged in what is already a condensed fixture list as a result of the pandemic.
As a result, City have been without a number of key players with the likes of Sergio Aguero, Gabriel Jesus and Fernandinho all missing plenty of action already – while Guardiola has been left with a selection headache at both ends of the pitch.
City’s heavy 5-2 defeat to…
Read More:Man City’s Nations League hotshots need to shift their form back to the Premier