Yaya Toure Says Manchester City 'Have to Get a Defender' in January

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistNovember 14, 2019

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 10: Pep Guardiola the head coach / manager of Manchester City uring the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester City at Anfield on November 10, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Former Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has called on the club to sign a defender in January. 

City, who have used midfielder Fernandinho at centre-back throughout the season with Aymeric Laporte injured, were beaten 3-1 by Liverpool on Sunday.

Toure wants to see City bring another defender in so Fernandinho can revert to his normal position:

Per Sky Sports News, he said:

"I think it is going to be hard, but in January City have to get a defender. It is never too late.

"I don't want to blame Rodrigo, but if Fernandinho was in the middle it would be really important. City miss him in there. He is strong, sharp, clever and anticipates and tackles. I respect the decision of the manager, but I don't like him in defence."

Laporte, City's best defender, suffered a serious knee injury at the end of August that could keep him out for six months.

The Sky Blues were also without first-choice goalkeeper Ederson for the trip to Anfield.

Tariq Panja of the New York Times thought it was telling that manager Pep Guardiola has continued to deploy Fernandinho in defence even with natural centre-back Nicolas Otamendi on the bench:

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John Stones partnered Fernandinho at the back, but Guardiola appeared to lose faith in him last season. The England international started just 20 Premier League games, and he didn't feature in the UEFA Champions League knockout phase or the Carabao Cup and FA Cup finals.

Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News questioned why City did little to improve their defensive options in the summer:

Given Eliaquim Mangala and defensive talisman Vincent Kompany left in the summer, it's strange Guardiola did not bring in a new centre-back if he doesn't have much trust in Otamendi or Stones.

City swapped Danilo for Juventus' Joao Cancelo in a like-for-like right-back trade plus money for the latter, while 19-year-old right-back Pedro Porro was bought from Girona and immediately loaned to Real Valladolid.

The club also re-signed left-back Angelino from PSV Eindhoven, having sold him to the Dutch club last year.

Guardiola's side only conceded 23 goals in the Premier League last term, but they've already shipped 13 this season in 12 matches.

They've also lost three times, having only suffered four defeats in the entirety of the last league campaign.

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