Football News

Mancini waits on Kompany fitness

Nov 23, 2012 2:55 PM GMT

Roberto Mancini is sweating on the fitness of captain Vincent Kompany ahead of Sunday's trip to Chelsea on Sunday.

The Belgium international was hurt in Manchester City's 1-1 Champions League draw with Real Madrid on Wednesday after a tussle with Cristiano Ronaldo during the latter stages of the game.

Kompany received treatment after the final whistle before leaving the Etihad Stadium on crutches.

He will be assessed on Saturday before a decision is made over whether he can play, but City manager Mancini is remaining optimistic that he will be able to lead the Premier League leaders out at Stamford Bridge in a crunch top of the table clash.

"I hope Vinnie can recover but we won’t know until tomorrow," the Italian told the club's official website.

"He is strong so there is a chance, but we will make a final decision on Saturday. Mario trained on Thursday so should be OK but Gael is still injured."

Left-back Gael Clichy will not travel to west London after failing to shake off an ankle injury, but there was better news for Mancini after striker Mario Balotelli returned to training after sitting out the past two games with a back injury.

Mancini, meanwhile, is wary of a Chelsea side with a new manager.

Owner Roman Abramovich replaced Roberto Di Matteo with Rafael Benitez at Stamfod Bridge in the early hours of Thursday.

Mancini does not think the switch will do City many favours.

"I think that usually when a team changes their manager the game after is very difficult for the opponent. I think that for us this game will be more difficult," he said.

"I think that Chelsea are one of the best teams in England and in Europe, they have won everything in the last 10 years.

"To play against Chelsea in London is always a good game. To win there could be very important for us. So if we want to win we should play a really good game."

Mancini wants his squad to maintain their strength.

"It's easy to be strong when we win every game, we should be strong also when we lose some games or when we can't play in the Champions League in February," he said.

"From this situation we can improve as a team and as a club because I don't think it's easy to win the Premier League and the Champions League the year after.

"It's clear we are disappointed because I think we have the players that deserve to play in the Champions League. But together we made some mistakes and for this reason we are out."