Man City confirmed team news: Pep Guardiola names Fernandinho at centre-back against Shakhtar Donetsk amid defensive crisis



By Sean O’Brien

18th September 2019,
7:00 pm

Pep Guardiola has been forced to play Fernandinho at centre-back for Manchester City’s Champions League opener against Shakhtar Donetsk in Ukraine – live on talkSPORT.

The Premier League champions have just one fit senior centre-back after England international John Stones suffered a thigh injury in training.

Pep Guardiola is short of options at the back

Getty Images – Getty

Pep Guardiola is short of options at the back

Stones joins Aymeric Laporte, who is out until the new year, on the sidelines.

And after Vincent Kompany’s departure in the summer, City are now short in that position which means Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho has been pressed into action as an emergency centre-back.

Nonetheless, it’s still Man City, so there’s still a plethora of quality on the pitch.

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Surprise at centre-back? How Man City could line up in Champions League opener

Gabriel Jesus starts up front instead of Sergio Aguero, while Riyad Mahrez comes in for Bernardo Silva and Kevin de Bruyne returns to the starting XI.

Confirmed Man City XI

Ederson, Walker, Otamendi, Fernandinho (C), Zinchenko, Gundogan, Rodrigo, De Bruyne, Mahrez, Sterling, Jesus

Subs: Bravo, Aguero, Bernardo, Silva, Mendy, Cancelo, E Garcia

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