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City v Fulham: Team news

PRESS CONFERENCE: Pep Guardiola addresses the media ahead of the game

PRESS CONFERENCE: Pep Guardiola addresses the media ahead of the game

Pep Guardiola confirmed Raheem Sterling is in contention for Saturday’s Premier League visit of Fulham.

The England winger was forced to withdraw from international duty with a back problem, missing out on the Three Lions’ clashes with Spain and Switzerland.

Asked of the winger’s availability in his pre-match press conference, Guardiola replied: “Yeah, he’s fit.”

The Catalan boss also discussed the topic of a potential new contract for Sterling, expressing his content with the winger’s performances.

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“It’s well-known that we are delighted with him – we would like to continue (with him),” Guardiola continued.

“The Club asked my opinion and I shared my opinion.

“Sometimes, this kind of thing needs time. What is important is Raheem and his people.

“We are delighted with him.”

Guardiola also shared an update on Kevin De Bruyne’s fitness. The Belgian has been ruled out for three months with a lateral collateral ligament (LCL) lesion but the City boss asserted the playmaker is recovering well.

“He is not fit for Saturday but he is progressing well,” he said. “The official doctor told me he is progressing well.

“Hopefully from a three month perspective, he is doing well.”

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Reflecting on City’s start to the season and his squad fitness, Guardiola declared his satisfaction.

“We started one month ago but now we have a game every three days,” he stated. “That’s why everybody will (play).”

Saturday’s opponents Fulham have had a mixed start to their Premier League return, having registered one win, one draw and two defeats.

Having had plenty of time to analyse the Cottagers over the international break, Guardiola has been impressed.

“I was delighted by them,” he hailed. “Usually, there is not too much time to watch opponents but in this case, we have had two weeks.

“I had time and I saw three games. I was really impressed.

“I understood when I watched them the reason why they are in the Premier League. They have really good players, experienced players and they try and (I like) the way they want to play.

“They want to make their own game, and I’m pretty sure Slavisa Jokanovic is going to make a good season.

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