Does Man City defeat against PSG prove that Pep Guardiola needs to sign a centre-forward?

The Premier League champions drew a blank in the French capital on Tuesday night.

Friday, 1st October 2021, 1:09 pm

Pep Guardiola is anything but conventional.

Whether it be his propensity for tactical innovation, or his willingness to push the boundaries of dugout sartorialism, the Manchester City boss has never been afraid to tread the path less travelled.

Once again, he has reiterated that point by heading into the new season without a recognised senior centre-forward in his squad.

Some will argue, justifiably so, that Gabriel Jesus is capable of occupying that traditional striking role through the middle for City, but increasingly it would appear that Guardiola regards him as yet another wide option – because lord knows he hasn’t got enough of those already.

In Pep's defence, he and his Etihad bosses did seem to go all out to lure Harry Kane away from boyhood club Tottenham, but after a saga that dragged itself through twist after outlandish twist, City were left without anything in the way of a meaningful or satisfactory pay-off. Think of it as the transfer equivalent of the final series of Game of Thrones.

And so, the champions embark on their defence with an attack that, at first glance, looks ostensibly blunted – like a Formula One car sporting the front bumper of a Ford Escort.

Last night, Guardiola took his side to Paris, where they were ultimately thwarted in their attempts to find the back of the net by a PSG side with more big names than a Beverly Hills phonebook.

But does this latest blank hint at a larger problem for City, or are they quite alright persevering with a False Nine for the foreseeable future?

We’ve taken a closer look at the champions’ xG tallies from every one of their matches across all competitions so far this season to see whether or not Pep’s men really are missing the presence of a proper striker…

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