Friday, May 24, 2019

Kompany´s Manchester City future depends on injuries, says Guardiola

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 8 Jan 2019

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Manchester City are in discussions over offering captain Vincent Kompany a contract extension, manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed.

Kompany joined City from Hamburg in 2008 and has been an integral part of their three subsequent Premier League triumphs.

The Belgium international started back-to-back league games for the first time since August as the reigning champions claimed a vital 2-1 win over Liverpool in the title race last week.

Kompany was arguably fortunate to avoid greater punishment when he was booked for a heavy challenge on Mohamed Salah during the first half but went on to turn in a commanding display at the heart of the City defence.

However, the 32-year-old’s withdrawal during the closing minutes was a reminder of the calf injuries that have dogged his progress over the recent seasons and Guardiola conceded his skipper’s fitness woes must be considered as his current deal approaches a June conclusion.

“Yeah, we are considering it, we are talking about that. I would like it,” Guardiola told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s EFL Cup semi-final first leg against League One Burton Albion, a game for which he stated Kompany is fit.

“He’s our captain, 11 years here. We saw in the last two games the huge quality and personality he has to play. The only problem with Vincent is one – his injury problems. 

“One against one, absolutely we’re better when Vincent plays. Aymeric Laporte has a better left foot, every central defender has his own quality but there’s no doubt Vincent has something special with his charisma, winning the duels.

“It’s incredible, he’s one of the best central defender I’ve ever seen. The problem is whether he’s fit, always it is that.”

City thumped Rotherham United 7-0 in the FA Cup third round on Sunday, having made eight changes from the side that beat Liverpool.

Jurgen Klopp made nine alterations as his men came up short in the same competition at Wolves on Monday.

It means, if City go the distance in both domestic cup competitions, they could end up playing eight more matches than Liverpool in the second half of the season, before considering their respective fortunes in last-16 Champions League ties against Schalke and Bayern Munich.

“I don’t have a theory from my experience about that. If everyone is fit and not injured we can cope with it,” Guardiola said.

“If we had just one competition to play in, I could play with the same 11 or same 12. Now everyone is involved.

“The players don’t know who will play against Burton. Then after four days we have another final at home to Wolves [in the Premier League].”

Guardiola added: “I prefer it, definitely. I like to be in the four competitions as far as possible. When Wigan put us out of the FA Cup last season I was sad.

“The reality for Jurgen is he knows exactly what happened. I’m not the right person to judge what the others do because I don’t like it when others judge our decisions.”

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