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Man City youngster Garcia ready to step up for Guardiola

01:30 EAT 31/10/2019
Eric Garcia Manchester City
The 18-year-old defender continues to impress after another solid performance in the 3-1 Carabao Cup victory over Southampton

Eric Garcia has no fear of playing in the Premier League if Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola requires him to step up. 

The 18-year-old defender has made five starts for the club, all in the Carabao Cup, and has never finished a game on the losing side. 

His one appearance in the Premier League came as a late substitute in the 8-0 victory over Watford in September. 

But with Aymeric Laporte ruled out until the New Year with a knee injury and John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi only just back from slight injury set-backs, Garcia is ready to step in if an injury crisis strikes again. 

“With these games, it helps to be ready if someday I have the opportunity to play,” he said after the Carabao Cup victory over Southampton

“These type of games are the ones that are really helping me. 

“Having the centre-backs we have like John, Nico and then Fernandinho can play there, or Rodri did play there and they play really well so I keep working and wait for my opportunity in these kinds of games to prove I can also play.” 

Guardiola was again impressed with the Spaniard’s performance in Tuesday night's 3-1 win over the Saints, saying “he didn’t make one mistake” following the match. 

Garcia, who spent time at Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy before switching to Manchester in 2017, has been consistently making an impact on City’s coaches since he made a permanent move up to the first-team squad last summer. 

While many of the club’s academy players have been sent out on loan across England and Europe to increase their game time, Guardiola believes his young defender will benefit more from being around the Etihad Campus. 

“I learn from all of them because they are all different players. I learn from Otamendi’s experience that he has and also Fernandinho,” Garcia added. 

“John [Stones] is a young player but we know with the ball he is really good so I try to learn from all of them. 

“At the end, Pep asks the defenders to play from the build-up and we try to do what we can. 

“The staff and the players are helping me a lot. I have more contact with the defenders because at the end we play in the same position and we try to help each other. 

“I haven’t heard anything [about a loan move]. I am fully focused on the training session and playing in these type of games.”