John Stones: Manchester City hit with another injury blow as defender is ruled out for over a month

John Stones: More injury woes for the Manchester City defender
John Stones: More injury woes for the Manchester City defender

Manchester City defender John Stones will be out for around five weeks with a muscular problem, manager Pep Guardiola has announced.

The England centre-back suffered the problem in training ahead of their Champions League opener against Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday.

"He (Stones) is out four, five or six weeks. He was injured in training this morning. It is a muscular problem," Guardiola said.

Stones' absence will add to the defensive problems for Guardiola, with French centre-back Aymeric Laporte already likely to be ruled out until the New Year.

"For me as a manager it is an incredible challenge. But I believe in something people don't know about - spirit and commitment. We will make steps forward to solve this problem," Guardiola continued.

In Laporte's absence, City conceded three goals in a shock defeat at Norwich on Saturday as Stones and Nicolas Otamendi struggled.

Guardiola defended his players, saying: "I have a lot of respect for what John and Nico have done.

"Football is not about how you handle the good situations. It is about how you handle the bad ones."

Midfielder Phil Foden has also not travelled with the squad to Ukraine due to illness as City prepare to face an opponent they and Guardiola have come up against on several occasions in recent seasons.

"I bought an apartment here! I have come here many times. Always it is good. With Barcelona, Bayern Munich and now City I have been here almost every season," Guardiola added.

Watch: Pep Guardiola's press conference

Pep Guardiola's pre-Shakhtar Donetsk press conference


Wednesday's Champions League tips, including Shaktar v Man City

The Champions League continues on Wednesday with two heavyweight clashes at the top of the billing. Tom Carnduff looks at the betting.

Our best bets for the latest Champions League action
Click here for our best bets for the latest Champions League action

Champions League: Golden Boot

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Click here to see our best bets for the Champions League top goalscorer market

Champions League outright preview

Our outright preview and best bets for the 2019/20 Champions League
Click here for our outright preview and best bets for the 2019/20 Champions League

The Champions League gets underway in September with 32 teams aiming for European glory. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.


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