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Ederson on Man City midfield injury crisis: 'I'm definitely up to the task'

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Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson has joked that he will be able to help out as a midfielder if the injury crisis at the club gets any worse.

Pep Guardiola had eight first-team players out for Saturday's draw with Burnley and was only able to name six substitutes.

City at least had three of those players back when they returned to training on Wednesday, with John Stones recovering from illness and academy players Phil Foden and Lukas Nmecha returning, but Ederson said he's happy to help out if required.

"When I played in the Benfica youth teams, they would always call me to play in midfield if someone was missing and I didn't ever embarrass myself," the 24-year-old Brazilian told FourFourTwo magazine. "So, if necessary, I'm definitely up to the task. It wouldn't be easy, especially in the Premier League, but I think I could manage the challenge.

"There are so many good players in this team who are ahead of me. I was always comfortable with the ball at my feet, and this helps me during games. I think it's a natural talent.

"It's something I've been working on since I started out at Sao Paulo, and over time, I've tried to improve my skills."

Ederson has the best pass accuracy (84.9 percent) of any goalkeeper in the Premier League, prompting Burnley boss Sean Dyche to compare him to Ronald Koeman in his postmatch news conference.

And just like the former Dutch international, Ederson says he's capable of scoring from free-kicks -- although he's not ready to push Kevin De Bruyne off dead-ball duties just yet.

"Even when I played in the local academy, I was trying to show off some ability with my feet. I actually scored several free-kicks," he added.

"One of my coaches encouraged me to try it. In the beginning, I didn't want to take any free-kicks but he pushed me to do it. Then I started scoring a few goals and everything changed. But I don't do it anymore. City have plenty of specialists in this area."