Martin Rickett

Vincent Kompany's latest injury is his 42nd since joining Manchester City in 2008

Particularly since November 2015, the defender has seen a dramatic decrease in game-time.

VINCENT KOMPANY WILL miss Manchester City’s clash with Swansea on Wednesday night because of a muscle injury sustained in the first-half of his side’s 2-1 derby win at Old Trafford at the weekend.

The defender was forced off at the interval and though the problem isn’t as serious as first thought, Pep Guardiola couldn’t suggest a possible return date for the Belgian when quizzed about it during his press conference earlier today.

“I think it will be less than we expect, so hopefully it could be in the short-term future. But exactly? I don’t know”, the City boss told reporters.

According to Physio Room, Kompany has racked up 42 reported injuries since he joined the club in 2008.

They’ve varied in severity but have wielded quite an influence on his game-time in recent seasons.

Over the last two full campaigns, Kompany has managed just 25 league appearances and calf injuries have repeatedly been to blame.

It remains to be seen if he has ever properly recovered from the calf problem he suffered  in early November 2015.

He was out for six weeks but returned to action as a second-half substitute on Boxing Day only to last for just nine minutes against Sunderland before a reoccurrence forced him off. And then he was missing until the following February.

Kompany missed out on Euro 2016 because of a thigh injury and didn’t feature for City again until September. On his first appearance back, he suffered a groin strain and missed the next three weeks.

In November, it was ligament damage and, after just one appearance in an FA Cup game against Crystal Palace in January of this year, he was out again until early April.

Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League - Etihad Stadium Mike Egerton Mike Egerton

Then, after starting the season well, Kompany picked up another calf injury while playing for Belgium in a World Cup qualifier against Gibraltar and only returned from that in mid-November.

Kompany is still only 31 years old and, having been signed by Mark Hughes for around £6m nine years ago, must go down as one of the best ever Premier League bargains.

But with Guardiola recently admitting the club ‘can’t count on him for a long time’, there seems an acceptance that his fitness issues aren’t going to magically disappear.

Given his declining number of appearances over the last two years, it’s becoming more difficult for City to justify keeping hold of Kompany.

But perhaps Guardiola feels that the defender still has plenty to offer the team, even if his on-field contributions are dwindling.

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