Manchester City striker Stevan Jovetic is a doubt for the club’s Premier League encounter against Arsenal this Saturday after he picked up a hamstring injury training for Montenegro at the weekend.
The in-form striker has shown what he is capable this season after a debut campaign dogged by injury, notching two goals against Liverpool and starting all three of City’s Premier League matches this season.
However, he failed to fire against Stoke as he started alongside Sergio Aguero for the first time since the Argentinian returned from the World Cup, and City manager Manuel pellegrini will have serious concerns should Jovetic miss the trip to the Emirates given that he allowed Alvaro Negredo to join Valencia on loan without bringing in a replacement for the Spaniard.
Jovetic piked up the hamstring injury during a training session ahead of Montenegro’s European Championship 2016 qualifier against Moldova last night, which his side managed to win 2-0 despite the absence of their star striker.
He has already returned to Manchester for treatment on the injury in the hope that he can play some part against the Gunners, with City looking for revenge after the season-opening 3-0 defeat in the Community Shield to Arsene Wenger’s side.
Ivan Radovic, Montenegro’s press officer, confirmed that Jovetic had suffered the knock and would return to his club for further treatment.
He said: “Stevan Jovetic has a hamstring injury and has returned to City. He can’t play [on Monday] against Moldova. All I know is that he is unavailable for this game. He suffered the problem in training, trying to catch a faster ball.”
Should he fail to recover in time for the London trip, Pellegrini will be left with Edin Dzeko and Aguero. Dzeko is yet to open his account this season having started the wins against Newcastle and Liverpool, but he was dropped for the 1-0 defeat to Stoke last time out. The striker can take some comfort though in the fact that he scored for Bosnia on international duty last week as they beat Liechtenstein 3-0.
Aguero is still being nursed back to full fitness by Pellegrini, with the Chilean reluctant to take any risks with his star striker given his recent string of injuries that has seriously hampered his amount of playing time.
With just two forwards available, Pellegrini could look to alter his formation and push midfielder Yaya Toure forward to support a lone striker meaning he can keep either Aguero or Dzeko on the bench should they be needed to shake things up in the second half.
City also had fears over the fitness of influential captain Vincent Kompany, but the centre-back came through 90 minutes in last Thursday’s 2-0 friendly victory over Australia and looks set to play against the Gunners in Saturday’s lunchtime kick-off.
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