Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has tested positive for Covid-19. The German is the third City player to test positive for the virus after Riyad Mahrez and Aymeric Laporte tested positive earlier this month. Although Mahrez has recovered on time and will be available for selection against Wolves, Laporte will not feature as he recently returned to training.
Gundogan will now observe a 10-day period of self-isolation as required by Premier League and UK Government protocol on quarantine. That leaves the team short of another important player for the opening game of the new season.
Although there are sufficient options in the midfield like Kevin De Bruyne, Rodrigo, Bernardo Silva and Phil Foden, Gundogan could be missed.
The 29-year-old was very important to Pep Guardiola last term. He played every minute of Manchester City’s Champions League matches. In fact, he was the only player in the squad to do so. He also featured in 31 of the 38 Premier League matches for the campaign.
He will now miss not only the game against Wolves but the mid-week League Cup fixture against Bournemouth and City’s encounter with in-form Leicester City on Sunday.
With City still in the market for players, the squad is not yet settled. Hence, missing two key players for the season opener could be tricky. The Blues have found Wolves a particularly difficult opposition in the last two campaigns.
The team lost home and away to Nuno Espirito Santo’s men in the league last term. Guardiola will need to make the best use of the players available, including returning Fernandinho to his defensive midfield role if necessary to secure a win at the Molineux.
We wish Ilkay speedy recovery.