REUTERS – Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany is likely to make his comeback following a six-week injury layoff in Saturday’s Premier League encounter with Sunderland, manager Manuel Pellegrini said on Wednesday.
In the eight league games the Belgium international started this season, City conceded once. However, they have conceded 18 goals in the nine matches they have played this season without the influential defender, who has been sidelined with a calf injury.
“The injury situation is better – we’ll have the complete squad recovered apart from Samir Nasri. Pablo Zabaleta, Fernando and Vincent Kompany have all worked with the squad normally,” Pellegrini told reporters.
“You are always missing good players — he’s the captain here and if he doesn’t play it’s an important player we don’t have in our squad.
“One of the most important things of this team is to be in the all competitions, not just depending on one player.
“We’ll see the starting line-up on Saturday. After that, especially with David (Silva), with Kun (Sergio Aguero), with Vincent, with Pablo — we have to see how they recover between games. I have not decided my team yet.”
After Monday’s damaging 2-1 loss to Arsenal, City will be looking to end their shaky form on Saturday, having lost three of their last five league games.
Five of the past six teams to have been top of table at Christmas have gone on to win the title, but Pellegrini dismissed the fact by saying that titles are not won in December.
“We are in this moment in third, four points (behind) Arsenal and six points (behind) Leicester. We play Leicester City on the 29th so it’s very important to win the (next) two games to finish the first round (strongly),” the former Real Madrid boss said.
“The important thing is to be involved at the end of January and then try and win the title in the remainder of the season.
“We lost important points against Arsenal… but it was not a decisive game. You never win the title in December.”
(Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar)