Aymeric Laporte returns to Manchester City & # 39; within two months & # 39

Pep Guardiola defends persisting with Fernandinho in Manchester City defence

Pep Guardiola defends persisting with Fernandinho in Manchester City defence

Pep Guardiola says Manchester City must tighten up in defence after they fell 11 points behind Premier League leaders Liverpool.

Just over a week ago, Pep Guardiola warned fans that it may be another two or three months before Laporte returns from injury.

The pair - who are now the club's only fit senior specialist central defenders - have not started together since a calamitous loss to Norwich in September.

Summer signing Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan have been chosen over three-time Premier League victor Fernandinho in midfield by the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss.

The reigning champions twice threw away a one-goal against Newcastle United, with goals from Jetro Willems and Jonjo Shelvey proving to be enough for Steve Bruce side to pick up a vital point in their hopes of survival.

He even suggested that the 34-year-old may continue in to play in defence in the future.

Asked why Stones and Otamendi are not trusted together, Guardiola said: "Because I like 'Dinho playing in that position a lot".

"I prefer Gundogan and Rodri in [the defensive midfield] position".

After failing to keep a clean sheet in seven games in all competitions, however, Guardiola accepts his team needed to tighten up at the back.

"They were better than the other ones, we played good, especially in the second half".

Record goalscorer Sergio Aguero (thigh) and left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko (knee) are not yet ready to return. But they kept going and they manage to score a great strike in the end, unfortunately for us.

"We are all gutted in the changing room", Foden said, quoted by the Manchester Evening News.

Guardiola is expecting a tough night at Burnley. That is the fact.

"We can't think too much about the people in front. [We have to] try to be.the chances that we have and the few we concede, to be more solid in these departments and we will improve".

We have to think about what we have to do to win the games and play quite similar to recent games, especially like Newcastle and, except for 20-25 minutes, against Chelsea.

PEP It's hard for all the teams (who visit Burnley).

Barnes feels part of their success, despite not being the most technical of players, lies in "defenders not being used to big lumps like us".