For Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, the major quandary with his starting XI against Aston Villa is the full back position. It is understandable, at least a little bit more now, why they let Joao Cancelo go in the January transfer window.
He was odd man out, while you still have three healthy first team fullbacks for just two spots- Kyle Walker, Rico Lewis and Nathan Ake. Although the last name there can also play in central defense if needs be.
Manchester City vs Aston Villa FYIs
Kick off: 4:30pm, Sunday Feb 12, The Etihad
Team News for Both Sides: go here
Transatlantic Passage: How the Premier League Redefined Soccer in America: LINK
PL Position: Man City 2nd, 45 pts Aston Villa 11th, 28 pts
Form Guide: Man City LWWLW Aston Villa LWWDW
Google Result Probability: Man City 74% Aston Villa 8% Draw 14%
It really comes down to either Walker or Lewis at the right back slot.
Because he just tried playing both at the same time, and it didn’t work out well at all.
Further afield, you also have the selection dilemma with where to slot in Julian Alvarez when Erling Haaland is fit, in addition to Jack Grealish when Phil Foden is also fit (which he may or may not be for this one)
Here is what we are going with, for what it is worth.
Manchester City Starting XI Prediction vs Aston Villa
Ederson; Lewis, Akanji, Dias, Ake; De Bruyne, Rodri, Gundogan; Mahrez, Grealish Haaland
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Sports Bank. He’s also the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He’s written for numerous publications, including the New York Daily News, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune. He regularly appears on NTD News and WGN News Now. Follow the website on Twitter and Instagram.
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