Man City VS Leeds LIVE Football Score 28/12/2022
Kalvin Phillips could be denied a return to his boyhood club after Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola declared him too unfit and overweight to train after returning from the World Cup. City resume their Premier League campaign with a tough assignment at Leeds, who sold Phillips to the Blues in the summer. However, Guardiola said Phillips is not in a condition to train after coming back from the England squad in Qatar overweight, casting doubt on his involvement back at Elland Road.
Elsewhere, Ruben Dias is out with a hamstring injury and Julian Alvarez has not returned yet, but otherwise City should have a full-strength side to pick from. The only considerations for Guardiola will be the fitness of his players, with some internationals featuring in the win over Liverpool and others named on the bench. Ederson should be back in goal for City now he’s made it back to the UK after some flight troubles, but there could be changes in defence. Walker and Cancelo can be restored to the full-back roles and Stones can start having come on against Liverpool. Laporte played at centre-back in the Carabao Cup game so he can play ahead of Ake.
The midfield will, I think, pick itself, especially with Phillips not in the picture at the moment. Rodri and De Bruyne are certain starters and I’d have Bernardo in ahead of Gundogan. In attack, Haaland will lead the line against a club close to his heart, with Alvarez not back in time to feature in the squad. One of the England wide man can be involved and I’d opt for Grealish on the left, with Mahrez keeping his place on the right, having played in the friendly against Girona and the Liverpool game. It feels as though Kalvin Phillips isn’t near a starting spot, even if he could have returned to training by now. So that means Pep Guardiola can persevere with Rodri and Kevin De Bruyne in midfield, bringing in Bernardo Silva to add some energy after he came off the bench vs Liverpool.
The back line in the Carabao Cup was okay, even if Liverpool broke through the lines too easily, but there were good performances from Nathan Ake and Rico Lewis. Still, for the Premier League, I could see a much changed back five to restore some World Cup faces and keep fitness at a premium ahead of the busy schedule. The two senior full-backs can come in, and a Stones-Laporte partnership is a strong one.With most of his squad available there’s no reason for Pep Guardiola not to go as strong as possible. That should see Ederson, Kyle Walker and Joao Cancelo come into the side while John Stones and Manuel Akanji could partner at centre-back.
Bernardo Silva should join the midfield while Phil Foden and Jack Grealish could be drafted into attack, even if it would be harsh on Riyad Mahrez. Manchester City will be without Ruben Dias, Julian Alvarez and Kalvin Phillips when they return to Premier League action at Leeds. Dias is set to be sidelined for a month due to a hamstring injury, while Alvarez has been given time off after helping Argentina win the World Cup.
City manager Pep Guardiola has said England midfielder Kalvin Phillips was “overweight” when he returned from the World Cup and the £45million summer signing from Leeds will not feature against his former club at Elland Road. Aymeric Laporte and Nathan Ake are set to compete for Dias’ spot on the left side of City’s central defensive partnership. Both having played in the Carabao Cup win over Liverpool on Thursday, when Erling Haaland was back among the goals after a break for the World Cup.
Kyle Walker and Joao Cancelo were unused substitutes in that match and should be named in the starting line-up while Phil Foden, Bernardo Silva and Jones Stones push for a return to the XI. Pep Guardiola has admitted concern about Manchester City’s defending before the World Cup break with the manager warning they cannot lose any more ground on Arsenal ahead of their “terrible” January schedule.
City lost 2-1 against Brentford at the Etihad Stadium on 12 November in their final Premier League match before the World Cup and, before Wednesday’s game at Leeds, Guardiola admitted that his team could “not control” Ivan Toney, who scored both the visitors’ goals last month. Following Arsenal’s win against West Ham on Boxing Day, Mikel Arteta’s side have a seven-point lead at the top of the table over second-placed Newcastle, but City can retake that place and reduce the lead to five points if they beat Leeds.
“I would have preferred another opponent than Leeds at this moment after the World Cup. They are the most aggressive team in the Premier League, statistically. They don’t give you time to think and you have to be precise. After our defeat against Brentford, and with how strong Arsenal are, as well as the opponents who come from behind, we have to be alert and careful, because if the distance is bigger, it will be so difficult to catch them.”
Tyler Adams is suspended after his red card against Spurs before the World Cup break. Manchester City are without Ruben Dias for a month due to a hamstring injury, while Kalvin Phillips will not feature due to concerns over his fitness. Julian Alvarez has been given time off after Argentina’s World Cup victory. Manchester City put out a strong team against Liverpool in the Carabao Cup on Thursday and they looked like they meant business in their first game back.
I like the way Leeds play, and they always seem to have a spell in every game where they are on top, but they rarely do it for 90 minutes and that worries me when they are up against a side as good as City. There will be a great atmosphere at Elland Road – I always loved going there as a player, and it is the same now I go to work on games there for 5 Live – but that won’t help Leeds much here.
NAME: Leeds United – Manchester City
DATE: 28 Dec 2022
TIME: 20:00 UTC
VENUE: Elland Road, Leeds, England