‘There were more positives’ - Buendia assesses his Premier League development with City
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
The pain of Premier League relegation is still fresh and Emi Buendia admits his form has been inconsistent, but Norwich City’s talented Argentine does feel he has developed his overall game this season.
Canaries fans had high hopes after Buendia’s brilliant first campaign with the club but one goal and seven assists in 35 games hasn’t quite seen the 23-year-old make the transition fully - although his assist count should arguably be higher.
So far in the Premier League this season only Kevin De Druyne (120), Jack Grealish and Trent Alexander-Arnold (both 85) have laid on more key passes than Buendia’s 81. Transfer links to Atletico Madrid and Valencia have resurfaced since City’s relegation was confirmed, with Buendia finally scoring his first goal during last week’s 2-1 loss at Watford.
“It was a great feeling. It arrived very late in the season. I’d have liked to score before to help the team with my goals,” Buendia said of that fine strike. “I enjoyed the goal as it was my first one but we lost the game, so I couldn’t really enjoy that moment.
“It was good to get the experience of playing at this level with the best teams and the best players. It’s the hardest, most competitive league in the world. Sometimes, I had good moments, other times I didn’t feel good, but I think there were more positives for me.
“We were really good last year, the champions. Now, we have to focus on getting back to the Premier League as soon as possible.”
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The former Real Madrid trainee and Argentina Under-20 international has been almost exclusively used as a right winger by Daniel Farke and Buendia says he has a good relationship with his head coach.
“He’s done a very good job with me,” he continued, speaking to City’s official website. “He controlled myself and my mistakes during the season. On the pitch, he gives me the chance to feel freedom to try my football, creating chances for my team-mates. I try to do my best in the final third.
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“At first, I played on the right wing, but with the freedom I can move around. For most of my life, my position has been the number 10 behind the striker, but with this system, it doesn’t matter for me if I’m there or on the left or right wing.”