Manchester City revelation Ilkay Gundogan pushing for POTS awards

Man City star Ilkay Gundogan

The gushing praise for Manchester City star Ilkay Gundogan keeps rolling in amid a truly remarkable and unexpected goal scoring flurry.

Football's capacity to throw up stories that nobody saw coming is one of the game's most captivating characteristics. 

John Stones' resurgence firmly falls into that bracket, but the England international has been overshadowed by Gundogan since the turn of the year.

Unchained in a more fluid, forward-thinking midfield role, Gundogan has scored 11 Premier League goals in his last twelve games, including a pair of braces against Liverpool and Spurs as well as a clinical finish against Chelsea at the beginning of December. 

The 3-1 away win at Stamford Bridge now represents a watershed moment in City's season, while it also provided an insight into what was looming on the horizon for the Germany international. 

To say Gundogan is the flavour of the month right now wouldn't do the hype justice, and the fact he's now being labelled as a contender for individual season awards attests to his lofty newfound status.

Indeed, Sky Sports journalist Nick Wright delivered a glowing verdict on the 30-year-old's transformation following his latest display against Spurs and suggested he's likely to be in the mix for individual accolades when the season reaches its conclusion.

"It has been an extraordinary transformation. A player who previously operated as a deep-lying midfielder - one who had never previously reached double figures for goals in a single season - is now thriving in a more advanced role, with licence to charge into the opposition box from midfield and even run in behind the opposition's defence.

"Pep Guardiola has taken Gundogan's game to new levels while simultaneously solving the issue of not having an out-and-out goalscorer at his disposal, and supporters will have been relieved to hear him say his early withdrawal at the Etihad Stadium was only precautionary.

"City, 23 games unbeaten, look increasingly like Premier League title winners. And Gundogan, with 11 goals in 12 games, looks increasingly like the leading contender for the season's big individual prizes."

GIVEMESPORT's Jack Saville says...

The thing about hot streaks is that, ultimately, they must come to an end. 

But what's so frightening about Gundogan's form is that the impeccable timing of his arrivals into the penalty area, something that is fundamentally intuitive, lends no reason to suggest that he's merely in the midst of a fluky purple patch. 

It would have been natural to predict his form to fade at the beginning of his remarkable goal scoring run, but Gundogan - valued at £36m by Transfermarkt - has clearly perfected his new-look role and will continue to get opportunities for as long as Guardiola picks him in an advanced midfield role. 

And if that does indeed prove to be the case, there is absolutely no question he'll be firmly at the forefront of the conversation for the prestigious PFA and Football Writers' Association awards at the end of the season. 

Given how Gundogan's mesmerising run of form has coincided with City's march into a commanding position at the summit of the Premier League, you'd have to say he's a firm favourite for multiple awards right now.

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