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Pep Guardiola provides John Stones injury update ahead of Real Madrid midweek clash



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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has issued an update on the fitness of John Stones ahead Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League quarter-final clash with Real Madrid.

The 29-year-old missed Manchester City’s 5-1 win over Luton Town in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon, as Pep Guardiola’s side moved to the top of the table and extended their current unbeaten run to 27 matches.

Second-half goals from Mateo Kovacic, Erling Haaland, Jeremy Doku and Josko Gvardiol helped the Sky Blues to an important three points, after Haaland’s deflected first-half effort had given Manchester City an early lead.

Pep Guardiola made a series of changes for Saturday’s victory, and also named both Kyle Walker and Nathan Ake on the substitutes bench, following recent injury issues for the defensive pair.

Goalkeeper Ederson also made his first Manchester City start since a 1-1 draw at Anfield in March, where the Brazilian was forced off with a muscular injury, following a collision with Darwin Nunez.

Centre-back John Stones was absent from the matchday squad for the win over Luton however, with the Englishman having reportedly battled through an injury problem during Tuesday’s 3-3 draw with Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu.

The second-leg of the quarter-final tie between Manchester City and Real Madrid takes place at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday evening, with the Blues looking to eliminate the La Liga side from the European competition for a second successive season.

Guardiola’s side thumped Real Madrid 4-0 at the Etihad Stadium in the semi-final second-leg last season, having also drawn in the first-leg in the Spanish capital.

Stones could still feature in Wednesday’s defining clash in east Manchester, despite fitness problems forcing the defender to miss Saturday’s Premier League win.

“He has some problems, some niggles. He’s fine! He’s not injured, but he felt uncomfortable,” revealed Guardiola.

City will take a 3-3 draw into Wednesday’s second-leg at the Etihad, after three goals from Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden and Josko Gvardiol last week.

Guardiola’s side had taken an early lead, however Real Madrid hit back with quick-fire goals from Eduardo Camavinga and Rodrygo.

Second-half efforts from Foden and Gvardiol saw Manchester City move into a 2-3 lead, however an emphatic Federico Valverde volley levelled the scoreline ahead of Wednesday’s second-leg.