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Manchester City wait for update on Jack Grealish’s groin injury

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 14 Feb 2024

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Manchester City are waiting for updates on Jack Grealish after an injury to the England midfielder took the shine off an impressive Champions League return in Denmark.

Grealish was forced off with a groin problem after 21 minutes of the holders’ largely straightforward 3-1 victory over FC Copenhagen on Tuesday.

Bernardo Silva also left the action before the end of the first leg of the last-16 tie after a blow to the ankle but it was Grealish pulling up that caused the most concern.

“He wanted to continue but we didn’t want to make the damage even worse,” said manager Pep Guardiola after the game. “We’ll make tests tomorrow (Wednesday).”

Grealish was making his first start in six games in what has been a difficult campaign for him.

The 28-year-old had a spell out with a dead leg earlier in the season and has been kept out of the side at other times by the good form of team-mates, notably Jeremy Doku in the first instance and latterly Phil Foden.

Another lay-off would be a blow for City as they chase a repeat treble, restricting attacking options soon after Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland had returned from their own injuries.

Silva could be doubtful for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Chelsea while it has also emerged that Josko Gvardiol and Mateo Kovacic have been nursing knocks.

Neither featured in Denmark and although midfielder Kovacic should be back in contention for the weekend, defender Gvardiol faces two to three weeks out with an ankle injury.

Fitness issues aside, City were dominant at the Parken Stadium, controlling in all aspects as they eased to a win that was far more convincing than the scoreline suggested.

The Danish champions, still in their winter break and clearly rusty, struggled to live with City and fell behind to an early De Bruyne strike.

City spurned several chances to increase their advantage before an Ederson error gifted Copenhagen debutant Magnus Mattsson an unlikely equaliser.

Silva restored the lead with a fine flicked finish and Foden wrapped up the win in stoppage time. The second leg takes place in three weeks’ time.

“I think getting the early goal helped us,” said Foden. “It is such a difficult place to come.

“We’re delighted with the performance and we take the 3-1 back.

“I thought the way we controlled the game and we picked the right times to attack was brilliant.

“I think we have a great group of lads. We’re all determined and the hunger is just the same from last year, to keep on and keep pushing.”

De Bruyne, who has quickly found top gear since returning from a five-month lay-off in January, provided the assists for both goals.

“He’s playing very well,” said defender Nathan Ake. “I think everyone expected him to come back a bit slower because he’s been out for five months or so, but straight away he hit the ground running and he’s been top. Hopefully he can continue like this.”

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