Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has given a positive update on Fernandinho, saying the Brazilian is now expected to be sidelined for less than a month.
Fernandinho hobbled off late on during Wednesday’s 3-1 Champions League win over Porto with a leg injury, and Guardiola had said after the game that he thought he would be out for four to six weeks.
But at his press conference ahead of Saturday’s trip to West Ham, Guardiola said of the 35-year-old: “The injury is tough but yesterday the results were a little bit more optimistic. So I think it will be shorter than one month.”
Kevin De Bruyne and Aymeric Laporte missed the Porto game – and last weekend’s 1-0 Premier League win over Arsenal – through injury, while Nathan Ake was also not part of the matchday squad on Wednesday due to a groin issue.
De Bruyne and Laporte have returned to training and when asked whether either of them or Ake would be involved on Saturday, Guardiola said: “Yes, some of them will be involved, some of them no. You will know tomorrow.”
Gabriel Jesus and Benjamin Mendy are definite absentees.
Crazy schedule continues for City
Three days after the West Ham match, City are at Marseille in the Champions League, then travel to Sheffield United four days after that.
Guardiola says “the schedule is completely crazy for everyone, especially the teams that play in Europe”, and he added: “The guys who have seven, eight days to prepare game by game have a huge advantage.
“On the other side, the teams who compete to win titles and be on top, it is the way we have to live.
“If we cannot adjust or accept or handle this situation, you cannot be manager (of) or play in these teams.”
Guardiola added: “When you have all the squad, you have more chances to win games, of course. We’re doing as much as we can, (but) it’s difficult to sometimes control it.
“New competitions in Europe, they want to create new things. Always the same, just two or three weeks a year to rest.
“For the players, this is the crazy, crazy situation for all of them.”