TalkSPORT pundit and former footballer Clinton Morrison believes a lack of leadership at the back for Manchester City is the biggest problem currently facing the champions – and is surprised they didn’t buy a centre-back in the summer.
City are currently in the middle of a defensive crisis, with Aymeric Laporte and John Stones out injured, leaving more unorthodox centre-backs Kyle Walker and Fernandinho in the running to partner Nicolas Otamendi in defence.
Morrison thinks that City should have bought someone to replace former captain Vincent Kompany, who left to join Anderlecht in the summer.
He told TalkSPORT: “They should’ve gone and signed Harry Maguire. I think that’s what Pep Guardiola wanted to do; he wanted to go and sign a big, commanding centre-half who’s a bit like Vincent Kompany – a leader. I just don’t think they have a leader in the centre of defence and I think that is their biggest problem at the moment.
“I am surprised that they didn’t go and sign a top-class centre-half in the summer.”
While Morrison went on to acknowledge that Laporte’s injury hardly helps matters, it is surely nevertheless far easier to criticise City for injury problems that are out of their control.
Assuming Walker and Fernandinho are defensive backups for Guardiola to call upon, they still went into the season with five options in that position, and while the timing of their injuries is unfortunate, there are still available alternatives for Guardiola to choose from in the weeks ahead.
Meanwhile, City were reportedly in the race to sign Maguire in the summer – which suggests there may have been a conscious decision from Guardiola to put his faith in those already at the club once the former Leicester City man had joined Manchester United.
Perhaps more is being made of the so-called crisis at City due to their defeat last weekend, though it may be Laporte who is the leader Morrison believes the team is lacking in, hence his calls to improve their defence following his injury.
Manchester City fans – how would you like to see the team line up over the next few weeks? How can you deal with Laporte’s absence? Join the discussion by commenting below!Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!