PEP GUARDIOLA has confirmed key defender Aymeric Laporte will be out for up to a month with a hamstring injury.
And that means the £57million defender is likely to miss the second leg of the Champions League tie with Real Madrid.
Laporte was injured in the first half of the 2-1 win in the Bernabeu and had tests on the problem on Thursday.
It is likely to be at least three weeks until he can play again – meaning it will be the other side of the international break in March when he returns.
Guardiola said: “He’s got a hamstring injury so the prognosis will be normally three weeks or one month, more or less.
“We tried to avoid it but unfortunately it’s happened after four or five months and go directly into demanding games, sometimes it can happen.”
Laporte missed virtually the whole campaign after injuring knee ligaments in only the fourth match of the season.
He battled his way back but the setback in Spain came when he was making only his fourth appearance of his comeback.
We tried to avoid it but unfortunately it’s happened after four or five months and go directly into demanding games, sometimes it can happen
Pep Guardiola on Aymeric Laporte
Guardiola believes he has the character to battle back from the setback – but has urged the French ace not to feel sorry for himself.
He looked devastated as he left the pitch just half an hour into the game and Pep said:
“Yeah, It’s tough I imagine.
“But they have to overcome these situations, so life is not easy.
“Always in this world the people who survive are the guys who overcome the bad moments, the guys who don’t play.
“You can face it ok, or you can complain and think the world is against me.
“The injuries it’s the same, so if you think i am an unlucky guy you will not improve. It is what it is.
“You have to accept it, work harder and try to come back as soon as possible in the best condition possible.”