Manchester City: Guardiola expects Ruben Días to miss Atlético Madrid and Liverpool games
Ruben Días has been sidelined since early March, The defender is poised to miss two huge games in Manchester City's season, against Atleti and Liverpool.
Pep Guardiola has indicated Manchester City will have to cope without Ruben Días for upcoming, crucial games against Atlético Madrid and Liverpool.
The centre-back has been sidelined since suffering a hamstring injury in the FA Cup win at Peterborough United on 1 March, and it was estimated that he would face between four to six weeks on the sidelines. It appears the Portuguese defender will be available again closer to the six-week mark than Guardiola might have hoped, with City facing Atlético in the Champions League either side of a key Premier League clash with title rivals Liverpool.
First comes a trip to Burnley on Saturday, with Días a confirmed non-starter for that game. "I don't know," Guardiola said, when asked how much longer Dias faced on the sidelines. The doctor said four to six weeks. I think we need 10 more days, two weeks more. Everything is going well."
The first leg of the Atlético quarter-final will be played at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday, with Liverpool visiting on Sunday 10 April, three days before Guardiola's men are back in European action in Madrid. The timeframe suggests Días may struggle to play any part in those three games, which are followed by an FA Cup semi-final, also against Liverpool, on 16 April at Wembley.
Although Días has been an integral figure in Guardiola's first-team plans, his absence from four Premier League games this season has not had a majorly adverse impact to date. Without him, City have won three and drawn once in four games (average points: 2.5), while with Días in the side they have won 19, drawn three and lost three (average points: 2.4) – though the sample sizes are significantly different.
City would have good cause to be cautiously optimistic of taking three points at Burnley without Días involved, however. After taking five points from their first 12 available against City in the Premier League (W1 D2 L1), Burnley have managed just one point from the subsequent 11 games between the teams (D1 L10). Indeed, City have won their last nine meetings with Burnley in all competitions by a 32-1 aggregate score.