Manchester City defender Nathan Ake was not in training on Monday morning, according to BBC reporter Simon Stone.
With the first leg of the Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid coming up on Tuesday night, the Dutchman looks unlikely to feature in the game, and fans on Twitter are concerned:
— 𝗪𝗜𝗡𝗥𝗬 (@winryone) May 8, 2023
What joke is this
— Ok I’m Dee❤️❤️ (@diodata_Zw) May 8, 2023
— André❄ (@andre_luthuli) May 8, 2023
Big blow 😤
— Jeremiah Johnson (@a_jerry_j) May 8, 2023
— Theodore (@TheodoreAbbey3) May 8, 2023
Akanji vs Rodrigo
It might be over
— Richie (@Mysterio__01) May 8, 2023
— Boss_KR (@HighLight_Kor) May 8, 2023
— maia (@citehblues) May 8, 2023
Ake had only just returned from a hamstring injury so it is more than likely that he has suffered a recurrence of the problem.
It would be a massive setback if the centre-back isn’t available. He fits in perfectly to Pep Guardiola’s three-at-the-back system which has worked so well in recent months. It means Manuel Akanji will probably have to cover the left-hand side, while Kyle Walker slots back in on the other flank.
Ake’s absence can be mitigated so it isn’t the end of the world, but it does limit the options at the back, which could have ramifications for City’s Premier League title hopes. They can’t afford to rest players with Arsenal just behind them and, with Guardiola already saying that some of his stars are tired, you do wonder how the squad will cope in the coming weeks.