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Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson has acknowledged that the club are missing the services of Aymeric Laporte at the heart of the club’s defence. The French centre-back picked up a serious knee injury before the previous international break and he has since undergone a surgery which will keep him out of action for most of the campaign.

Speaking after the shock 2-0 defeat to Wolves, Ederson accepted that injuries have hampered the performances of the club during the early stages. He added to talk about the quality of Laporte and admitted that they are short in the central defensive department with John Stones also in the treatment room over the past month.

He told: “It's very difficult for a team like us having injuries, especially if they all happen in the same position on the pitch. We all know about the amazing quality of Aymeric and how good he is in the build-up phase. Of course we are missing him. We have other great players who can replace him in that position. Unfortunately, with the injury to John Stones, we have only one natural centre-back.”

In the absence of Laporte and Stones, Nicolas Otamendi is the only senior central defender available and he has been accompanied by Fernandinho over the past month. While the Brazilian midfielder has been effective dropping to a central defensive role, he had one of his toughest games at the weekend where Adama Traore scored twice on the counter-attack.

The Citizens will have some relief with Stones expected to return from a thigh problem this month but there are nonetheless concerns whether the centre-back can remain unscathed over an extended period of time. As such, it won’t come as a surprise, should the Citizens spend on a new central defender at the turn of the year. Manchester City are currently eight points behind Liverpool, who are at the top of the league table.