Friday, May 26, 2017

Pellegrini boosted by Kompany, Sterling returns with Real Madrid looming

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 18 Apr 2016

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Vincent Kompany has handed Manchester City a major fitness boost with their Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid on the horizon.

Captain Kompany has missed City’s last six matches with his latest calf injury but, speaking ahead of his side’s Premier League trip to Newcastle United on Tuesday, manager Manuel Pellegrini revealed the inspirational Belgian is ready to play some part at St James’ Park.

City then host Stoke on Saturday before the first leg of their glamour tie with Madrid next Tuesday.

“Vincent will be an important help to the defence,” Pellegrini said at Monday’s pre-match media conference.

Raheem Sterling is also back in City’s squad after a groin problem, but Pellegrini warned that his progress will be monitored before a decision is made on whether he can play against Newcastle.

However, Samir Nasri has joined David Silva (ankle), Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy (both back) on the sidelines.

“Raheem is coming back from an important injury, we’ll see if he can play some minutes tomorrow. It depends on the way he returns,” added the Chilean.

“Nasri was feeling well – it’s a small muscle injury, it’s not too important so we’ll see how many days he’s out for.”

In-form City’s convincing 3-0 victory at Chelsea on Saturday – earned courtesy of a Sergio Aguero hat-trick – moved them up to third in the Premier League, and their recent record against Newcastle offers plenty of reason for optimism.

The Etihad Stadium outfit have won their last 12 top-flight meetings with the Magpies, but Pellegrini is wary of Rafael Benitez’s side, who gave their chances of staying in the Premier League a shot in the arm by beating Swansea City 3-0 on Saturday.

“Newcastle are very dangerous, they have good players. St James’ Park is difficult and they need all the points to not get relegated,” he continued.

“We must continue the way we played on Saturday, solid, keeping a clean sheet and scoring goals.”

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