Vincent Kompany could make his first Manchester City appearance in two months when Pep Guardiola’s side visit Everton in the Premier League on Sunday.
City have been without their captain – plagued by injuries over the past couple of seasons – since he limped out of the 2-1 win at Crystal Palace on November 19 with a knee problem.
Kompany missed the busy festive period, with John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi not always looking solid in his absence.
But in his pre-match media conference on Friday, Guardiola revealed that Kompany was in line for a return at Goodison Park.
“Kompany is back – after that he can hopefully stay for long and after I will see his level,” Guardiola said.
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“When I am thinking about his top level you cannot deny how good Vincent is.
“He was a long, long time injured but he is mentally strong – but I don’t want him to put too much pressure on himself – you have to do simple things and hopefully he will achieve his level.
“He wants to come back immediately and make everything perfect immediately but he has to feel and be given time by manager and team-mates to come back.
“I would like to bring stability. The idea is to have more control. To be stable at the back doesn’t just depend on the defenders.”
On wider team news, Guardiola added: “Hopefully tomorrow Fernando can train with us, Kevin De Bruyne was sick but he’s recovered and the others are okay.”
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