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Man City dealt big blow as Guardiola confirms potential return timetable for Stones & Laporte

Man City dealt big blow as Guardiola confirms potential return timetable for Stones & Laporte

Man City vs Southampton

Manchester City are back in Premier League action on Saturday afternoon.

The Citizens will play host to Southampton in a 3 pm kick-off, which the hosts should have little issue in winning.

Barring their opening weekend loss to Tottenham, Man City have had a fine start to the campaign, which has already included them beating Norwich 5-0, Arsenal 5-0 and, most recently, RB Leipzig 6-3 earlier this week.

As a result, it is widely expected that the Sky Blues will hammer Southampton. The Saints have not won a league game this term, having drawn three and lost one.

They have also kept just one clean sheet, and have a dismal record against City. Southampton have beaten the Sky Blues just once since 2016, with the same fixture last season having seen the Manchester outfit emerge as 5-2 winners.

Pep Guardiola on Stones & Laporte

Before Saturday’s game, Pep Guardiola held his pre-Southampton press conference on Friday.

The Spaniard discussed a number of topics, including team news.

It was reported before the Leipzig game earlier this week that John Stones and Aymeric Laporte weren’t fit enough to take part in training on Tuesday, and were therefore doubtful for Wednesday’s clash.

Both, in turn, went on to miss out, failing to even make the matchday squad.

And when speaking about the pair on Friday, Guardiola suggested that the two  defenders look set to miss at least City’s next three matches.

The Spaniard stated that he does not know if they will be back for Wycombe or Chelsea – City’s next two outings following Southampton – but is hopeful that they will be ready after that:

“Muscle injury. Stones didn’t play for us and played 90 minutes for the national team and came back injured. Laporte came back with some niggles but he wanted to play against Leicester, but after that game his niggles were a little bit higher and we didn’t want to take a risk. I don’t know against Wycombe or Chelsea but hopefully they can be ready after.”

This would leave just Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake as natural centre-back options for the next three games, with the Citizens looking set to be without two of their best defenders for a huge clash with Chelsea.

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This article was edited by Conor Laird.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Chelsea FC 9 20 22
2 Liverpool FC 9 21 21
3 Manchester City 9 16 20
4 West Ham United 9 6 17
5 Brighton & Hove Albion 9 0 15
6 Tottenham Hotspur 9 -4 15
7 Manchester United 9 1 14
8 Everton FC 9 1 14
9 Leicester City 9 0 14
10 Arsenal FC 9 -3 14
11 Wolverhampton Wanderers 9 0 13
12 Brentford FC 9 2 12
13 Aston Villa 9 -2 10
14 Watford FC 9 -5 10
15 Crystal Palace 9 -3 9
16 Southampton FC 9 -4 8
17 Leeds United 9 -8 7
18 Burnley FC 9 -8 4
19 Newcastle United 9 -9 4
20 Norwich City 9 -21 2

Premier League 21/22

Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 7
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 6
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 5
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 4
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 4
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 4
Firmino, Roberto Liverpool FC 4
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 4
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United 4
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 4
Hwang, Hee-chan Wolverhampton Wanderers 4
Sarr, Ismaila Watford FC 4
Greenwood, Mason Manchester United 4
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 3
Townsend, Andros Everton FC 3
King, Joshua Watford FC 3
Ings, Danny Aston Villa 3
Benrahma, Said West Ham United 3
Gray, Demarai Everton FC 3