Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed that Leroy Sané is facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines due to his torn ACL.
The German international winger sustained the injury during last Sunday's Community Shield win over Liverpool at Wembley.
Speaking ahead of City's season-opening fixture away to West Ham tomorrow lunchtime, Guardiola didn't reveal the full extent of the damage to Sané's anterior cruciate ligament, but is resigned to being without him for most of the season, "Normally, with this kind of injury it’s six or seven months. Hopefully, in February or March, he will come back with us."
Sané's injury continues a pattern of long-term issues picked up by City players during pre-season in recent years, as Guardiola points out: "It’s incredibly bad news. In three pre-seasons, we have had three ACLs." Benjamin Mendy tore his ACL shortly after joining from Monaco in 2017, while Claudio Bravo had his season curtailed by a long-term injury last summer. Ilkay Gundogan missed a chunk of the 2017-18 season due to an ACL problem of his own.
And the City boss says Sané is also facing a long road back to full fitness, "He is a young player and hopefully, he will recover well. He’s in the best hands possible. We will see next week.
"All the people here will try and help him be comfortable.
"For one or two months, he will feel alone. We will be with him as much as possible."
In his final season at the club, David Silva has been confirmed as club captain. Vincent Kompany's departure for Anderlecht left the armband without an owner at the Etihad.
Guardiola says the decision to hand the armband to the Spaniard was made by the players, "The captain has to be what he is. He knows the Club, the Premier League… he has big respect.
"Normally, the captain is the life of the locker room – they know each other; they have fun a lot when they are together.
"There will be no problem. He will be a good captain."