Manchester city find themselves in sight of a key clash against familiar foes in Liverpool. Although Man city sit comfortably at the top, Liverpool always manage to cause some distress. Liverpool had a rocky start due to lack of reinforcements in key areas. Since however, Liverpool have become increasingly dominant as the team adapts to a new system and players.
If the previous matches are any sign then Manchester City have a tough battle on their hands. Manchester City would have to put up a dominant performance to deter Liverpool from biting at their heels for the top spot.
Man City handicapped before facing Liverpool
Manchester City have run out of their luck with injuries recently. Consequently, after the recent international break their squad has thinned out. John stones one of the cornerstones of City’s midfield and seldom in defense(ironically!) is out due to a muscle injury. This has come at a bad time with Man City versus Liverpool right around the corner. According to Manchester evening news, Pep Guardiola commented on the injury. He said,” We’ll see after the international break. The doctor said to me it’s not bad. I don’t know, but I don’t want to create tempo [a time-frame]. When he’s fit again he’ll come back“.
Pep does look distressed due to the injuries but smartly dosen’t want to aggravate anything further by rushing his players. When asked about the long standing injury to De Bruyne he commented something similar. De Bruyne is another player that would only return later in January after a serious injury. Although Pep propagates the importance of system more than the players involved and has ample substitutions to back it up. However, the level of quality and consistency shown by these players is hard to be replicated.
Another major absentee from the side would be Nathan Ake. The versatile defender could play anywhere across the backline. He would have certainly helped Man City in giving Liverpool a hard time in front of the goal. The likes of Mateo Kovacic and Matheus Nunes also missed international breaks with their respective countries of Croatia and Portugal. Their is a very high probability that both the exceptional ball carriers would be out of the match against Liverpool. This will make it difficult for Man city to bypass the Liverpool press. However, Sergio Gomez, the fullback is back in training and could get important minutes.
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