Sky Sports pundit Alan Smith has claimed that goalkeeper Claudio Bravo will not be in a great state of mind if he starts for Manchester City in their clash against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.
It has been confirmed that Ederson will miss City’s trip to Merseyside this weekend and that means that Bravo, 36, is expected to start.
Bravo replaced Ederson at half-time in the 1-1 draw against Atalanta in the Champions League on Wednesday night but was sent off after playing for 36 minutes for a truly erratic piece of goalkeeping.
Ex-Arsenal striker believes that the red card will have an impact on Bravo going into Man City’s showdown at Liverpool.
“As brilliant as they remain on the front foot, City do not appear to wield the same aura as a defensive force,” said Smith on the Evening Standard website. “I think some opposing teams feel they can mount Pep Guardiola’s barricades.
“That thought has probably firmed up following Ederson’s injury against Atalanta this week. One of the finest keepers around will now be missing at Anfield. As a result, no longer will City feel quite so confident playing out from the back.
“Ederson will be replaced by Claudio Bravo, whose lunge and red card in that Champions League tie confirmed the notion of suspect decision-making. It certainly doesn’t put Bravo in a great frame of mind going into a huge match.”
Bravo is nowhere near as good a goalkeeper as Ederson so Man City are going to go into their clash against Liverpool with a weakened team regardless of Pep Guardiola’s line-up on Sunday. Liverpool, on the other hand, have all of their regular key players available except for Joel Matip. Both team’s defences have shown frailties this season, not just Man City’s. Liverpool are struggling to keep clean sheets in the way that they did last season and neither are Man City. That means the top two sides will play against each other with weakened defences that have not been that great anyway so goals can be expected this weekend. This game is more than likely going to be settled on the attackers. Sadio Mane is in amazing form but Man City’s Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling and playmaker Kevin De Bruyne are three players who cannot be underestimated this weekend.