News today confirmed that Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure will be out injured for around two weeks. Toure has been in scintillating form for City this season, scoring 22 goals in all competitions with 18 of those in the Premier League, making the Ivorian the third top scorer in the league — not bad for a central midfielder.
All signs point to this being catastrophic news for City, but actually, although it cannot possibly be good in any way, it’s not quite as bad as it might initially seem. It’s certainly more manageable at this time because Javi Garcia has improved tremendously since last season and even the beginning of this one. He cannot quite replace Toure’s attacking surges, his mass of goals or his ability to dominate games home or away, but he can release Fernandinho to be more expressive.
At Shakhtar Donetsk, Fernandinho was more of a box-to-box midfielder than he has been at City. He has had to curb his attacking instincts slightly because of the gaps Toure leaves to do his damage. Now the Brazilian can play his natural game more and exert his influence in the attacking quarter more than he usually is able to do. From midfield, City will mostly miss the goals Toure has brought to the table.
They are fortunate enough, though, to have star striker Sergio Aguero back from injury now, and that should cover the goals that Toure has contributed. It’s only two weeks as well, initially at least, and the games at home to Sunderland and West Bromwich Albion as well as an away day to Crystal Palace should be games City are able to deal with, even without their midfield maestro.