The Frenchman has been out of action with a calf injury but is set for a place on the bench at Stamford Bridge, while the Chilean insists his side are not dependent on Yaya Toure
Sami Nasri could make a surprise return to the Manchester City squad for Saturday’s heavyweight clash against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Manuel Pellegrini has confirmed.
The French midfielder has been sidelined since mid-January with a calf injury and had been expected to miss three weeks, but he has recovered quicker than expected.
Nasri could be named on the bench against the league leaders, which would be a welcome boost due to the absence of Yaya Toure. The former Arsenal man has replaced him with success previously this season, as he scored and assisted against Roma when the Ivory Coast star was suspended in the Champions League.
“Samir has worked normally in the last couple of days. Maybe it’s too soon but we will see if he can be on the bench,” said Pellegrini at his pre-match press conference.
“[Yaya is] an important player but we qualified against Roma and beat Bayern without him. Teams don’t depend on one player.”
Reigning champions City are five points adrift of Chelsea, having lost last time out against Arsenal, and despite the prospect of falling eight points behind their rivals Pellegrini does not believe Saturday’s game will be decisive in the race for the title.
“It’s a very important game, but not the game that will decide the title, because after that we have 45 points more to play for,” added the Chilean.
“Some years ago we saw that when this club won the title when they were eight points behind Manchester United [with six games to go].”