Soccer

Pep Guardiola to miss Man City’s next two matches after routine back surgery

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has undergone routine back surgery (Mike Egerton/PA).
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has undergone routine back surgery (Mike Egerton/PA). Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has undergone routine back surgery (Mike Egerton/PA).

Pep Guardiola will be absent from the touchline for Manchester City’s next two matches after undergoing an operation to correct his “severe back pain”.

According to City, their treble-winning manager has been struggling with the injury for a while and flew out to Barcelona for an “emergency” but “routine” surgery on Tuesday.

Guardiola will remain in Barcelona during his convalescence and is expected to miss City’s matches against Sheffield United this Sunday and Fulham on September 2, with assistant manager Juanma Lillo stepping into the breach.

City anticipate Guardiola returning to the dugout after the international break for the visit to West Ham on September 16.

A Manchester City statement said: “Pep Guardiola has today undergone a routine operation on a back problem.

“The Manchester City boss has been suffering with severe back pain for some time lately, and flew out to Barcelona for emergency surgery performed by Dr Mireia Illueca.

“The surgery was a success, and Pep will now recover and rehabilitate in Barcelona.

“In his absence, assistant manager Juanma Lillo will oversee coaching of the first team on the training field and will assume duties on the touchline until Pep’s return.

“He is expected to return after the forthcoming international break. Everyone at Manchester City wishes Pep a speedy recovery, and look forward to seeing him back in Manchester soon.”