Manchester City defender Nathan Ake has revealed why he decided to rush back on the line before making what turned about to be a goal-saving clearance against Arsenal at the weekend.
Aymeric Laporte headed the ball over the onrushing Ederson, with it looking almost certain that the Citizens would concede before Ake got back into position to clear. Asked what was going through his mind in the buildup to the chance, he says he was worried about a possible mistake so he tried to help out:
“It was a bit of a miscommunication and I saw it happening a little bit so I thought I would keep going just in case and it happened. I just predicted that something may go wrong as I saw Ederson come off his line and luckily I kept going and I cleared it off the line.”
Fans on Twitter were praising Ake for his great anticipation, with many feeling that he is showing people he is a better defender than fellow countryman Virgil van Dijk:
Match saving hero
— Grealish MCFC 💙 (@Kafkaesque_10) January 2, 2022
You saved us Nathan🔥💙💙💙what a clearance 👏🏽 🙌🏼
— Nisorh (@Zethemb87730720) January 2, 2022
He sees things you’ll never see.
— Fort Beswick (@DaveHodge1965) January 2, 2022
— Tyga👑🇺🇬 (@real__tyga) January 2, 2022
Great insight. I’d have struggled to work that out 👏
— dis (@ffscout_luke) January 2, 2022
Best dutch defender in the league
— Joul (@CityJoul) January 2, 2022
— Invisible Man (@SheikhManCity08) January 2, 2022
— Erick Marco (@ErickMarco18) January 2, 2022
Deserve to start for Netherlands ahead of VanDisny
— ⚡🅰️ (@thecityzen06) January 2, 2022
It certainly proved to be a pivotal intervention from Ake. The Gunners subsequently went down to ten men, and tried to hold out for a draw, before a last-minute winner from Rodri got City what could be a vital three points.