Pep Guardiola believes Leroy Sane could spend a month on the sidelines after he injured his ankle during Manchester City’s 2-0 victory over Cardiff in the FA Cup fourth round on Sunday.
Germany international Sane sustained the injury to his left ankle just before half-time of the contest at the Cardiff City Stadium after he was on the receiving end of a strong challenge from Bluebirds defender Joe Bennett.
Sane was substituted at half-time and Guardiola has now confirmed the 22-year-old potentially faces a month out of action with the problem, meaning he could miss important games in the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup.
Speaking in his post-match press conference, Guardiola said: “He will be out for a while, minimum two to three weeks or a month. We will see tomorrow exactly.”
Guardiola has also called for referees to do more to protect players from being on the receiving end of tough challenges, as he believes creative players need to have the freedom to express themselves.
“I have said many times, all the referees have to do is protect the players – not just the Manchester City players, all players,” the Spaniard added.
“So for the football in general and the players – because they are the artists – we need to take care of them. I’ve said it many times but they need to protect them.”
City are next in action when they play host to West Brom in the Premier League on Wednesday.
The Citizens are priced at 1.15 to secure a victory from that contest, while Albion are available at 19.00 and the draw is on offer at 7.50.