The seven Man City players who could miss Community Shield vs Liverpool FC
Pep Guardiola could be without seven key first team players for the Community Shield, despite coming through pre-season without picking up any new injuries.
Manchester City take on Liverpool at Wembley next week for the chance to retain the Community Shield, and Guardiola is likely to field a similar line up to the side that started the win against Yokohama in Japan on Saturday.
Raheem Sterling has been deployed as a central striker in pre-season, scoring four times, while Kevin de Bruyne has been in promising form after last season’s injury-hit campaign. New signing Rodri also looks set to start in the absence of Fernandinho.
Brazilian Fernandinho is one of five South American stars who missed the pre-season tour following their involvement in the latter stages of the Copa America.
Gabriel Jesus, Fernandinho and Ederson won the trophy with Brazil, while Nicolas Otamendi and Sergio Aguero won bronze medals for Argentina.
All five were given extended time off after the tournament in Brazil and could return to training with the rest of the first team squad this week. However, they are unlikely to be match fit for the Community Shield, especially against an opposition of the quality of Liverpool.
Riyad Mahrez also tasted success with his country this summer, lifting the African Cup of Nations with Algeria earlier this month. Assuming he is granted the usual three weeks holiday, Mahrez should return just before the first game of the Premier League season at West Ham.
Mahrez’s 2019/20 campaign ran for 11 months and would surely benefit from the full time off allowed.
Finally, Benjamin Mendy will definitely not be available as he continues to recover from knee surgery.
Mendy has been active on social media in recent weeks posting daily updates from the gym, but MEN Sport understands the full-back is not expected back into first team training with the rest of the squad until the first couple of weeks of August, ruling him out of the Liverpool clash.