Liverpool have been handed a boost with the news that Manchester City centre-back duo John Stones and Aymeric Laporte could miss the clash between the sides in two weeks time.
Laporte has come back into the side alongside Ruben Dias this season after losing his place to Stones in 2020/21. He has started the current campaign in good form, keeping the Englishman out of the regular XI.
However, it looks like Pep Guardiola will be without both of them for a while after they missed the weekend’s 0-0 draw with Southampton.
The Telegraph reports that they will each miss the next two weeks of action. This would have them unavailable until after the next international break.
That means that they will be out of three huge games, starting with another huge title clash against Chelsea this Saturday.
City then face PSG in a massive Champions League tie on Tuesday, before travelling to Anfield on Sunday week.
They are three of the biggest games of the Citizen’s season. They are the last three matches that they would want to be missing their first- and second-choice partners for Dias.
Laporte and Stones absence huge for Liverpool
Laporte and Stones being out of the Liverpool game would be excellent news for the Reds.
They are two of the best centre-backs around and would be huge losses to any team.
This should leave Nathan Ake in the heart of the defence for the trio of fixtures. While he is a decent player, he is not on the level of Laporte or Stones.
We reckon that Mohamed Salah could cause him lots of problems when they face off.
Yet it is not only the Liverpool game that we are concerned about here. City have already dropped four points this season and looked less than convincing in the 1-0 win over Leicester.
If Chelsea beat them this weekend, it would be a massive blow. If Liverpool do the same the following week then it would put a big dent in their title hopes.
We know there is an awfully long way to go yet, but falling nine points behind the Reds and the Blues at the top of the table is a real possibility for City.
That is why the absence of Stones and Laporte is such a big deal.
Will they be able to stop two of the best teams on the planet from scoring without them? And will they be able to break down two teams that have only conceded one goal apiece this season?
It is a tough question.
All we know is that we would be delighted to see the City teamsheet absent of Aymeric Laporte and John Stones when they face Liverpool in a week and a half.