Defending champions Manchester City have fallen eight points behind Liverpool in the Premier League following Sunday’s 2-0 defeat to Wolves.
Pep Guardiola’s side have gifted chances and goals in three of the four Premier League games they have played without defensive lynchpin Aymeric Laporte, and they cannot afford to keep dropping points with Liverpool having enjoyed a 100 per cent start.
Not bringing in a replacement for the charismatic departed captain, Vincent Kompany, now appears to be a big mistake. Kompany’s exit left Pep Guardiola with only Aymeric Laporte, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi as the only recognised options in central defence.
But Guardiola’s side have also endured a body blow by losing Laporte for long-term following a knee ligament injury.
But with Laporte out until March following knee surgery, Manchester City have not only lost their best defender and excellent ball-player at the back, they are now absolutely threadbare as far as central defensive options are concerned.
John Stones’ injury last month has seen Guardiola pair Otamendi with Fernandinho in defence but the plan hasn’t worked.
To put things into perspective, City should buy a central defender in January. They could do a great job if they manage to land Atletico Madrid’s Jose Gimenez, who was linked with a move to the Etihad in 2017.
Jose Gimenez, 24, has been one of the best defenders in the past couple of years alongside his national teammate and former club captain Diego Godin.
His performances for Atletico Madrid and Uruguay over the past few years have been right up there with the very best. He is an archetypal South American defender, known for strength, power, energy, aerial prowess and ball-playing ability.
A technically gifted centre-back, the Uruguayan is agile through the ground and tenacious in the tackle. One of the most important qualities why the 24-year-old would be a perfect fit for City is the fact that he suits the club’s on-field playing philosophy – quick transition from the defence to the offence.
Gimenez has a strong reading of the game and ability to play out from the back with utmost ease, which are qualities Guardiola expects from his central defenders.
All in all, the Uruguay international has all the required attributes needed to be a success in the Premier League.
Only 24, Gimenez might just be the perfect centre-back for Guardiola and City as they will look to commit him for a long future with the club as the player has time on his side.
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