The next time that Manchester City plays, it will be Oct 2, for the home edition of the Manchester Derby. In that local rivalry grudge match, they will take on a Manchester United side that will be extremely rested. In fact, by that point, the Red Devils will have gone almost a month (29 days) in between domestic fixtures. It will be 17 days since that United squad had seen any action at all.
While United will have the advantage of more rest, City will counter that by having a side that’s nearly fully fit. Let’s took at the latest surrounding their trio of absentee players.
That list consists of Kalvin Phillips (shoulder), Benjamin Mendy (suspension) and Aymeric Laporte (knee).
We start with Phillips, who has only seen 20 minutes of playing time this season due to a chronic shoulder injury. Phillips sustained the injury in an end of the 2020-21 season appearance with Leeds United against West Bromwich Albion.
Having almost missed out at featuring with England at Euro 2020, his World Cup prospects are now in doubt too.
City manager Pep Guardiola revealed that Phillips needs shoulder surgery, and that means he’ll face an extended spell on the sidelines.
“The doctor says when you have been out four times with a shoulder, the only solution is surgery,” said Guardiola.
Asked if this was a frustrating start to Phillips ‘ City career, Guardiola responded: “Absolutely. For us as well. We need him. Rodri cannot play all the games. Kalvin came for that, to fight for a position.”
Shifting to Mendy, he remains indefinitely suspended as he is currently on trial for multiple criminal charges. He was however, cleared of two counts of rape and one of sexual assault against the same woman. Here’s more on his ongoing trial, from Press Association Sport, via Sky Sports.
Pending the outcome of his trial, it is likely that he will never be seen in a City shirt again.
Finally, center back supreme Aymeric Laporte was back in training this week, ahead of the wins over Wolves and Borussia Dortumund. He was not however, named to the match day squad for either contest. Maybe he comes back in for the derby, and sees some time off the bench?
He won’t be rushed back from knee surgery that is for sure.
Aymeric Laporte spotted in training today at the City Football Academy! ??? pic.twitter.com/OuwlBAceM0
— TheMCFCView (@TheMCFCView__) September 12, 2022
Enjoy the international break everyone! Insane fixture congestion will be back before you know it.
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He has regularly appeared in WGN, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and he co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast, part of Edge of the Crowd Network. Follow him and the website on Twitter and Instagram.Follow paulmbanks