Ilkay Gundogan is confident Manchester City will continue to improve under Pep Guardiola and challenge on all fronts next season.

Gundogan missed a large chunk of his maiden season in England due to a cruciate ligament injury sustained in December, watching on from the sidelines as City went on to secure a third-placed finish, though they ended the campaign without a trophy.

City have already confirmed deals for playmaker Bernardo Silva and goalkeeper Ederson in two big-money transfers this close-season, and Gundogan believes they can contend for multiple trophies in Guardiola’s second campaign.

“I think it was still a good and successful season. The way we played; we started really well in the first seven or eight games – we won everything,” he told City’s official website.

“It was important to get this third position in the Premier League to go direct into the Champions League, but maybe some people think we could have done more.

“Generally, the performances were really good and we just need to focus on small details for the next season.

“I am quite sure we can compete for everything, for all titles in every competition. We should just aim for the best. We have such a great team and the management will also take care to make sure we are better.

“That should be the target. The way we play is dominant, a lot of possession, we are able to create a lot of chances. We showed already that we are able to beat anyone.”

Gundogan made 16 appearances for City in all competitions, scoring five goals and adding two assists before his season-ending injury, and the German international is determined to come back stronger.

“To be honest I think watching from the sidelines is one of the most difficult things,” he continued. “But I think I’m in a good way. I can’t wait to be back.

“It’s also hard when I’m around the training or doing my own rehab on one side of the pitch and the team is training on the other.

“I’m working hard. I’m staying longer in Manchester than the rest of the squad. They are now on holiday but I am staying longer and I’m also coming back earlier to have my own little pre-season.

“Hopefully I can join the rest of the lads for preseason – maybe not 100 per cent but I am increasing day by day the work and hopefully being ready for the first Premier League game.”


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