Benjamin Mendy’s serious knee injury has resulted in Fabian Delph starting at left-back for Manchester City.
The 27-year-old starred in defence in the 1-0 win over Chelsea before the international break and started there again in Man City’s game against Stoke City on Saturday.
And while Pep Guardiola is clearly happy with his makeshift left-back, he does miss Mendy.
“We would miss him a lot - it would be a major setback,” Guardiola said this week, per the Daily Mail. ''It's very frustrating for him.
“Like what happened last year with Ilkay Gundogan, I feel really sad. For the way we want to play, he is a unique player.”
Mendy has, to his credit, managed to remain in good spirits. His Twitter feed is filled with pictures of sharks and he doesn’t seem too down about the ruptured cruciate ligament that will likely end his season.
Delph received his full support from his French teammate on Twitter on Friday.
In response to Guardiola’s comment that Mendy’s injury is a “problem”, Mendy said: “Dont worry Delph got this coach 😎✌🏾 ahaha”.
City's players wore shirts for Mendy
After Gundogan went down an injury last season, Man City players wore shirts with the German’s name on before a match against Arsenal.
They were routinely mocked but Yaya Toure said the decision came after the players saw Gundogan moping around at the training ground after he injured his cruciate ligament.
“We were all affected by what happened to Ilkay and he’s a massive player for us,” Toure said.
“We came in with these shirts, we saw him at the training ground and he was very sad. But I think he’s a guy who is positive and will come back quickly to help the team.
“We wore the shirts because we wanted to inspire him. We wanted to win this game for him.”
The Gundogan tributes
So it was hardly a surprise to see Mendy receive the same treatment on Saturday.
City’s players wore ‘Mendy 22’ shirts before they took on Stoke.
Upon seeing the tribute, the left-back posted a brilliant tweet.
“Who needs a GF when you have these teammates 🤷🏾♂️,” he wrote.
His attitude through all of this has been class.