Ilkay Gundogan has offered his support to Manchester City team-mate Benjamin Mendy with the defender facing a lengthy lay-off due to a knee injury.
Left-back Mendy was hurt in a tackle on Andros Townsend during City’s 5-0 win over Crystal Palace at the Etihad Stadium last Saturday. The France international is to visit Barcelona-based specialist Dr Ramon Cugat for a full assessment of the injury this week but manager Pep Guardiola has said he could be out for a long time.
Midfielder Gundogan has only just returned to action himself after spending nine months on the sidelines following knee surgery, so he can sympathise.
The German said: “I think our task now is just to support him and just to be there if he needs something from us. I know how difficult these kinds of situations are. There’s not really much to talk about at the moment but we wish him a very speedy recovery and we support him in every way.”
Gundogan suffered another injury scare after taking a blow to his other knee during his first start since last December, in the Carabao Cup tie at West Brom.
But the problem did not prove to be serious and the 26-year-old came off the bench in Tuesday’s Champions League victory over Shakhtar Donetsk.
Gundogan said: “I’m just happy that I returned that quickly after that hard tackle. I tried to train on the Friday and I still felt a little bit in my knee.
“On Saturday it was not possible to be in the squad but I trained on Sunday and Monday and I felt good, so I’m just happy to return that quickly.”