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Introducing: The Fernandinho replacement to win Manchester City the league, Oleksandr Zinchenko

Introducing: The Fernandinho replacement to win Manchester City the league, Oleksandr Zinchenko

Manchester City may have been able to beat Chelsea to the Carabao Cup at Wembley over the weekend, but that triumph did not come without its negatives.

Aymeric Laporte and Fernandinho were both taken off injured during the game with Pep Guardiola confirming the duo could be out for weeks (BBC Sport).

And while replacing Laporte should not be too much of a difficult task with the likes of Vincent Kompany and John Stones waiting in the wings, things will not be that simple when it comes to Fernandinho.

After failing to sign a holding midfielder last summer, the base of Manchester City’s midfield remains one of the weaker areas of Guardiola’s squad on the basis that the Spaniard has no like-for-like alternative to Fernandinho.

For now, though, Oleksandr Zinchenko could prove to be a very good short-term fix for the Citizens.

The 22-year-old is currently filling in for the injured Benjamin Mendy at left-back, and his performances there this season give Guardiola reason to be optimistic if he decides to use him in that holding midfield position.

Against Chelsea in that Carabao Cup victory, in particular, Zinchenko impressed when it came to his defensive duties.

The Ukraine international won both his ground and aerial duels, stepped out at the appropriate moment and showed plenty of energy even in extra time.

Ilkay Gundogan and Danilo are also options when it comes to stepping in for Fernadinho, especially if Guardiola wants to keep Zinchenko at left-back. But based on his Wembley showing, he has the attributes needed to deputise for the injured Brazilian as Manchester City chase down back-to-back Premier League titles.

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