Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini announced the return of defender Vincent Kompany after the captain's been sidelined for two months with a thigh injury.
The Chilean assured the Belgian international that he would feature in tomorrow's away game against West Bromwich Albion.
"He is a very important player for us. He is a very good defender and, of course, we need him," Pellegrini told the Daily Mirror.
The manager insisted his team's defensive performance has been immaculate in the last five Premier League games despite the absence of Kompany.
"I think in our last five games - maybe I am wrong - only Sunderland have scored against us. All the other games were clean sheets, so all the other defenders can do well also.
"But Vincent is always an important player for us," concluded the gaffer.
Pellegrini spoke about the importance of the games during the Festive period and implied with 27 points in the pool, Manchester City could close on leaders Arsenal, who are six points ahead.
"The amount of points we are going to play for is important for all the teams. There are 27 points available and that is a lot of points," he said.
"There are six or seven teams within three points of each other, so it's very important to get as many points as we can."
Manchester City are third, a point above Liverpool. The team scored 15 goals in the last four games, including a 7-0 victory over Tottenham and a classic win over Swansea last weekend.
The Citizens, however, lost two away games in a row and will look to make amends to their form with the visit to the Hawthorns on Wednesday evening.
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