Pep Guardiola started Nathan Ake at centre-back in Manchester City’s 1-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur last Sunday, leaving Aymeric Laporte on the bench, but the City manager might make a change ahead of Sunday’s Premier League meeting with Aston Villa.
City are in poor form of late and aren’t shutting out their opponents out regularly, so Guardiola could bring some balance back to the defence with Ake on the left instead of Rico Lewis, and Laporte alongside a right-footer in the middle.
The 28-year-old has made 13 appearances in all competitions this season, but he’s hardly played after falling down the pecking order. Laporte recovered from a knee injury earlier in the campaign and has spent most of his time as an unused substitute, so he’ll be desperate to feature.
But with Laporte being 1st in the City squad for aerial duels won (2.8 per game), 4th for pass completion (92.2%), joint-2nd for blocks (0.4 per game) and joint-1st for least amount of fouls (0), Guardiola should recall him to the starting lineup. He’s dominant in the air and isn’t reckless with his tackling.
Pep loves having a left-footer alongside a right-footer for balance, so Laporte could partner up with Manuel Akanji at centre-back for Sunday’s clash with Villa.
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