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Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne Absent – Man City Could Be Forced into Seven Changes Against Chelsea

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Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne Absent – Man City Could Be Forced into Seven Changes Against Chelsea


Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne are among the uncertainties for Manchester City’s FA Cup semi-final clash against Chelsea at Wembley on Saturday.

With less than three days between the intense Champions League penalty shoot-out against Real Madrid and the FA Cup fixture, Pep Guardiola acknowledged the tight schedule but affirmed Manchester City’s readiness to confront the challenge at hand.

However, the exertion of extra time and penalties against Real Madrid has complicated preparations for the crucial FA Cup tie.

Adding to the challenge, Haaland, De Bruyne, and Manu Akanji all requested substitutions during the Real Madrid match, casting doubt on their availability against Chelsea.

Given that seven players endured the full 120 minutes on Wednesday, some may be rested to ensure squad freshness for the Wembley encounter.

While Ederson’s penalty heroics suggest he could feature twice in three days, Stefan Ortega, the cup goalkeeper, may return against Chelsea to maintain goalkeeper rotation and fitness.

In defense, if Akanji’s fitness remains uncertain, John Stones could step in, with Kyle Walker’s full-game return potentially making way for Rico Lewis at right-back.

Ruben Dias might retain his place due to limited alternatives, although Nathan Ake’s availability provides an option for stability on the left side of defense.

In midfield, Rodri’s pivotal role may see him continue despite his expressed desire for rest, while Mateo Kovacic could support the holding midfield position alongside Stones and Lewis offering defensive support.

Phil Foden’s inclusion might be necessary, while Jack Grealish and Jeremy Doku, who provided an impact against Real Madrid, offer fresh options.

If De Bruyne is unfit, there’s an opportunity for rest, and Haaland could also benefit from a break if Julian Alvarez is called upon, considering his limited playing time against Real Madrid.

Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne Absent – Man City Could Be Forced into Seven Changes Against Chelsea

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