'We definitely can’t afford to lose both Stones and Rodri'

Manchester City fan's voice graphic
Manchester City fan's voice graphic

Nigel Rothband, The Man City Show podcast

I’ve just about recovered from watching an outstanding game of football at the weekend. Two evenly matched sides, plenty of drama, mistakes and no less than eight goals to enjoy. It’s a very long time since Manchester City have conceded four goals in a Premier League game.

There was a distinct lack of control from City against Chelsea on Sunday and I think I know why.

It was only a few weeks ago that City fans were reflecting on a poor run of results and pointing out that Rodri’s absence, through suspension, coincided with that dip in form.

Well, it was John Stones' injury and subsequent absence that was significant on Sunday. In addition, while Manuel Akanji did a reasonable job in the Stones role, he didn’t give Rodri enough cover, particularly when the Spaniard pushed upfield. It allowed Chelsea to counter-attack.

Let’s hope Stones recovers in time for the resumption of the Premier League after the international break, when City have a run of three tough games against Liverpool, Tottenham and Aston Villa.

A booking in one of those games for Rodri would mean he’d miss the next match through further suspension.

We definitely can’t afford to lose both Stones and Rodri.

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