Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has provided a fitness update on two of his key players ahead of the derby against Manchester United.
The Sky Blues host their city rivals at the Etihad on Sunday (October 2) as the Premier League returns after the international break.
City have been dealing with a few injury concerns lately and Guardiola was asked about defenders John Stones and Aymeric Laporte.
Stones picked up an injury during England’s 3-3 draw against Germany in the UEFA Nations League. Laporte, meanwhile, underwent knee surgery during the summer and is yet to feature for the English champions this season.
Speaking at a recent press conference, he said of Stones (via Manchester Evening News):
However, when pressed on the timeframe for which the defender will be out, the Spaniard added:
As for Laporte, Guardiola said:
In addition, Kalvin Phillips, who signed from Leeds United this summer, is set to remain out for a number of weeks after undergoing shoulder surgery.
The Cityzens will once again count on Erling Haaland to provide the goods in the derby. The Norwegian striker has taken England by storm since joining from Borussia Dortmund this summer.
He’s struck 11 times in seven games in the Premier League, including back-to-back top-flight hat-tricks, and will be eager to add to his burgeoning tally.
Both Manchester City and Manchester United enter the derby in great league form, making the clash all the more exciting.
The Sky Blues have continued from where they left off after clinching the title once more last season. They have won five times in seven outings this season and are unbeaten in all competitions.
They are the only team besides Tottenham Hotspur who’re yet to lose a match in the league this season.
United, meanwhile, recovered from back-to-back losses in their opening two games. They won the next four league matches in a row, including a 3-1 win over table-toppers Arsenal.
Erik ten Hag has managed to turn the tides following a rocky start to his tenure but this one will be his toughest assignment yet.
Paul Merson predicts Man City vs Man Utd, Arsenal vs Tottenham and other GW 9 matches! Click here
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