Men’s Team

Mendy ready to show City fans his quality

ON THE MENDY: Benjamin says he is delighted to be back after two serious injuries
Benjamin Mendy says he is determined to have a long and successful City career after returning from two long-term knee injuries.

The left-back, who joined from Monaco in the summer of 2017, played just 23 times in his first two seasons at the Club.

He ruptured cruciate ligaments in his knee in a game against Crystal Palace in 2017, which saw him miss seven months of City's Centurions campaign.

And a tear to the meniscus in his left knee in the 3-1 win over Manchester United in November 2018 meant he played just four more times before the end of the Fourmidables season.

But he made his first appearance in five months when he came off the bench in the recent win over Shakhtar Donetsk, before playing 45 minutes against Watford and the final half an hour of Wednesday’s Carabao Cup victory at Preston.

With the games set to come thick and fast - and with Aymeric Laporte expected to be absent until the new year - Mendy's return is a timely one. 

He says he is delighted to be back on the field and is determined to show the City fans he is committed to helping continue our era of dominance in English football.

“It’s a very, very good feeling,” he said. “It was not easy. I am not crying, nothing changed.

“I worked very hard in Barcelona and Manchester [during the rehabilitation period]. All the physios helped me a lot.

“I was injured, came back, then was injured. The fans can be sad, I can understand, but I can do nothing more than work hard.

“I listened to the doctor and I worked on my knee.

“Now I hope everything is good and I can give everything to this club for a very, very long time.”

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With Mendy now back to full fitness, his reintroduction has been carefully managed, with three appearances in eight days totalling 82 minutes.

Despite his lengthy layoff, he has looked sharp, providing City with additional attacking ammunition down the left-hand side.

The 25-year-old says he is feeling strong and is ready to play his first 90 minutes since April.

"I feel very good,” he added. “We are working very nice, all the team. They helped me a lot to get me back with the squad.

“I am back with them now and I want to keep going in this way. I feel good, my knee is good, now I need rhythm.

“I am very happy, I want 90 minutes, why not, but I am here for the squad and ready to play for the manager.”

Ahead of last weekend’s game with Watford, Guardiola described Mendy as having a “special quality” that helps City attack in a way that isn’t possible without him.

Indeed, it’s probably one of Guardiola’s biggest regrets that a player he signed to revolutionise our play has been largely unavailable for two seasons.

So, what exactly did the manager mean about Mendy being 'special'?

“You need to ask him!” Mendy said. “All the players have some quality that is special.

“I think it’s my power to go on the attack and then get back - how I project myself onto the attack and go behind the winger and put crosses in.”

UEFA Champions League: Group Stage tickets

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