The blend of youth and experience in the Manchester City midfield has been an unexpected delight for manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.

City lined up with 19-year-old Michael Johnson and 34-year-old Dietmar Hamann in the centre against Aston Villa and the pairing worked superbly and, along with Brazilian playmaker Elano, have slotted together nicely and Eriksson believes Johnson could not wish for a better player to learn from than Hamann.

"You would think in the second half the legs won´t work any more but he is getting better and better in every game," the former England boss said. "We are very happy as long as he can run for us, because his football brain is much, much more than normal, and the experience he has is incredible."

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