Pep Guardiola will lack 5 first-team players in Marseille, with another 2 just returning from injury.
Pep Guardiola fears this season might boil down to the survival of the fittest after Sergio Aguero dealt Manchester City a fresh injury blow.
Aguero, City’s record goalscorer, might be out for another month after suffering a muscular injury in Saturday’s game at West Ham.
The Argentinian was playing just his 3rd match since recuperating from the knee operation he had in June.
Aguero suffered another injury obstacle at West Ham on Saturday (Catherine Ivill/PA)
City had actually been attempting to reduce him back into action however he came across a problem in the first half of the 1-1 draw at the London Arena and was withdrawn at the period.
With Gabriel Jesus also sidelined, the 32-year-old’s newest obstacle leaves City without a frontline striker for Tuesday’s Champions League Group C clash at Marseille
To intensify matters, Fernandinho, Benjamin Mendy and Nathan Ake also lose out at the Stade Velodrome while Aymeric Laporte and Kevin De Bruyne have only just went back to physical fitness in a challenging start to the season.
Manager Guardiola acknowledges, nevertheless, City are not the only club to have a hard time due to the nature of this season’s pandemic-affected calendar.
Guardiola stated: “We are not an exception compared to the other teams in Europe. We’re on the very same schedule. Now it is recovery, preparation, recovery and preparation, recovery and preparation.
” We do not have time to practice much. Everybody got the stats– in the Premier League, we have 47 percent more muscular injuries than the very same duration last season. It’s not just about City, it has to do with everybody.
“If the people can reflect on this and the guys to protect the players it will be good for the future, if we don’t it will increase. Now we have to protect the players as best as possible. The strongest ones will survive, the others will fall down.”
With hindsight, Guardiola confesses might have been a good idea to generate another striker over the summer however the club invested the bulk of their transfer budget on defensive set Ruben Dias and Ake.
Guardiola stated: “We considered it, we thought of it another kind of striker however we might not.
“If you decide to buy a striker, it has to be a striker in the league of Gabriel and Sergio, but we cannot afford it. That is the reality.”
- Marseille (a) – Oct 27
- Sheff Utd (a) – Oct 31
- Olympiacos (h) – Nov 3
- Liverpool (h) – Nov 8
- Spurs (a) – Nov 21
Aguero appears not likely to be offered for City’s clash against champions Liverpool on November 8.
“It depends on the injury,” Guardiola stated. “When it is minimum it will be 10-15 days. If it is longer it will be three weeks to a month. I don’t know.”
While City’s form in the Premier League has been blended, they started in the Champions League with a 3-1 win over Porto. Success over a Marseille side beaten in their opener by Olympiacos might see them develop an early position of strength in the group.
Marseille boss Andre Villas-Boas handled Chelsea and Tottenham (Thanassis Stavrakis/AP)
The French side are handled by Andre Villas-Boas, the former Chelsea and Tottenham boss.
Guardiola stated: “He is an skilled manager, he understands completely the Premier League.
“He’s a young manager who’s had success and he is doing a good job here in Marseille.”