EDERSON has been told he could be Manchester City’s regular penalty taker — by a keeper who scored 129 GOALS during his career.
Rogerio Ceni was the Etihad favourite’s idol growing up and he now works within the City Football Group.
He coaches Bahia, who became the latest club to join the CFG stable earlier this year.
After guiding his team to safety in Brazil’s top flight, he took a trip to the Etihad Campus and paid a surprise visit to see Ederson.
The City No 1 often puts himself forward for the chance to take over spot-kick duties for Pep Guardiola’s Treble winners.
And Ceni — who regularly got on the scoresheet during 22 years at Sao Paulo back home — sees no reason why he cannot do it.
He even cheekily promised to put Ederson on all penalties and free-kicks if he moves to Bahia.
Ceni, 50, told his countryman: “You would totally be able to take a penalty in a game. If I bought Ederson, I would let my goalkeeper take penalties and free-kicks for sure.
“If he is the best player for it — with the best success rate — I see no reason why not.
“Because I lived that situation for so long, I see no reason not to. It just comes down to performance — whoever strikes it best.
“The goalkeeper has greater ease in this case because he will know the other keeper’s mindset.”
Ederson — who lines up against Sheffield United this afternoon — revealed he was inspired by the chat with his all-time goalkeeping hero.
And it firmed up the 30-year-old’s belief that he would score if he was handed penalty taking responsibilities ahead of Erling Haaland, Julian Alvarez and Co.
Ederson, famed for his ability on the ball at City under Guardiola, said: “When I talk to an idol, I absorb many good things.
“Rogerio is my idol and such an inspiration to me. Even today I watch his videos on YouTube.
“He was one of the pioneers of playing with your feet in goal — although at that time it did not have the same value as it does today.
“I would definitely take responsibility for penalties. I know my capabilities and what I could do.
“Above all, I think you just have to have the personality and serenity to execute it well.”
Ederson, who joined City from Benfica for £34.9million back in 2017, claims there was a time a couple of years ago when he was close to getting the job.
Guardiola’s side missed a number of spot-kicks in the 2020-21 campaign and there was talk of them turning to their Samba king keeper.
“We went through a very, very tough phase where we were missing a lot of penalties.
“So I said, ‘The next penalty we get, I’m going to take the ball’.
“The problem was there wasn’t a penalty after that so it just didn’t work out for me.”
Ceni presented Ederson with the gloves he wore during his final match as a player back in 2015 — along with a shirt from his unveiling at Bahia.
He believes the City superstar is continuing the legacy that he started during his days playing in their homeland.
He told the Etihad star: “It’s difficult to say who is the best goalkeeper in the world now — but surely you are among the top five.
“However, with your feet I would say without doubt that you are the best in the world.
“In you, I just see an extension of my career — I can see myself when I watch you play. How I was and how I viewed football.”