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'I agreed to help Pep' - Fernandinho happy to fill in at centre-back for Man City

13:41 GMT 26/11/2019
Pep Guardiola Fernandinho Man City vs Wolves 2019-20
The Brazilian has had to undertake a new role in recent weeks and has no problem continuing to play at the back as the season progresses

Fernandinho insists he is happy playing at centre-back for Manchester City at the moment, having "agreed to help" Pep Guardiola while Aymeric Laporte recovers from injury.

Vincent Kompany left the Etihad Stadium after 11 trophy-laden seasons back in May, leaving Laporte, Nicolas Otamendi and John Stones as City's only remaining senior central defenders.

Guardiola decided against bringing in a replacement for the Belgian, which came back to haunt him in the early stages of the 2019-20 campaign.

Laporte damaged the cartilage and lateral meniscus in his right knee during a 4-0 home win over Brighton on August 31 and underwent surgery in Barcelona the following week.

The Frenchman is not expected to return to action until well into the new year, which has left City short on options at the back.

The reigning Premier League champions have struggled to cope in his absence, with Liverpool storming eight points clear at the top of the table after 13 matches .

Fernandinho has been asked to partner Stones in the heart of the defence in recent weeks, with Otamendi's performances called into question amid a testing period.

The 34-year-old has now revealed that he has pledged to fill the position for as long as required and has no problem doing so given his versatility.

"Pep asked me if I would help him and I agreed to it," he told City's official website . "I said it wouldn't be a problem because I've always been able to play in multiple positions throughout my career.

"After Pep Guardiola's arrival, my position varied more often; I played as a right-back, right-midfielder and a midfielder on the left too. As a holding midfielder, a left-back and a centre-back on both sides.

"So the only positions I haven't played in under Pep are the three attacking ones and as a keeper."

Fernandinho added on learning to play in different positions as a youngster back in his homeland: "In Brazil, it's very common for players to play on the street in barefoot.

"They get plastic balls or whatever they can find and use their imagination to create a game of football.

"Sometimes I'd start in goal because I was the youngest, then I played in the backline. Sometimes I would play in midfield and attack and we would rotate so we could play in every position whilst having fun at the same time.

"That helped me a lot when I started to train to become a professional footballer."

The City ace will come up against his former club Shakhtar Donetsk at the Etihad in the Champions League on Tuesday night, when a win will be enough for Guardiola's side to progress to the last 16.

Fernandinho is looking forward to the encounter and expects a tough contest against the Ukrainian champions.

He said: "It's pretty cool to take on a former club. Every time we take on Shakhtar they are difficult games, I am sure the next one will be no different."