Manchester City will be without Kevin De Bruyne for this weekend’s Premier League visit of Arsenal after the Belgian suffered an injury during the international break.
De Bruyne was substituted in last week’s Nations League fixture against England and, although Belgium boss Roberto Martinez insisted the measure was a “precaution”, the playmaker was an early withdrawal from the national squad.
While Pep Guardiola is optimistic the unspecified injury is not too serious, the City manager refused to put a timescale on De Bruyne’s recovery, but admitted he would be unavailable to face the Gunners.
“Unfortunately Kevin is out but the rest of the players have come back well,” Guardiola said, when asked about the readiness of those who have recently returned from international duty.
“I don’t think it’s much but the next games I think he will be out. But we’ll see day-by-day how it’s going on. Every team has a lot of games. I don’t know, I cannot answer (how many games De Bruyne will miss).
“I never complain about international games, I know how important for the players for their countries, it’s a privilege and they have to do it.”
Gabriel Jesus remains on the sidelines and Guardiola is not prepared to rush the Brazilian back into the first team, despite City’s modest start to the campaign which has seen them collect just four points from three games.
Guardiola offered a more upbeat assessment on fellow striker Sergio Aguero, who has recently returned to training following a knee operation in June that saw City’s record goal-scorer miss key fixtures at the end of last season.
“He’s trained well and we are happy, we need a striker, we played without them but he’s trained three or four days, we are happy to see him back.”