Man City left sweating as injured Bernardo Silva withdraws from Portugal squad

Bernardo Silva Portugal 2018
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The playmaker is set to miss his country's UEFA Nations League match against Poland on Tuesday night

Manchester City midfielder Bernardo Silva has withdrawn from the latest Portugal squad due to injury, the Portuguese Football Federation has confirmed.

The 24-year-old travelled with the national side but will not feature against Poland in Portugal’s UEFA Nations League tie in Guimaraes on Tuesday night.

In a statement, the Portuguese Football Federation said: “Following medical and diagnostic tests performed by the FPF Health and Performance Unit, player Bernardo Silva was considered unavailable for the meeting against Poland.”

Silva scored what proved to be a vital third goal in a 3-2 victory for Portugal the last time the two sides met in October.

The nature and severity of the midfielder’s injury has yet to be confirmed, but City boss Pep Guardiola will be hoping that it does not rule him out of Saturday’s Premier League trip to the London Stadium to face West Ham.

In the absence of Kevin de Bruyne, Silva has assumed the mantle of chief playmaker with ease so far this campaign, featuring in all 12 of City’s league matches and contributing three goals and three assists in the process. He has also provided two goals in four Champions League outings.

Guardiola’s side sit two points clear of second-placed Liverpool, who travel to Watford at the weekend, and will be looking to maintain their unbeaten start to the season.

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Silva picked up a minor groin complaint while on international duty in a 1-1 friendly draw with Croatia back in September, although on that occasion his withdrawal at half-time proved to be a cautionary decision made by manager Fernando Santos.

Tuesday’s fixture will have no bearing on the outcome of Portugal’s UEFA Nations League group, with Santos’ men having already confirmed their qualification for the semi-finals and Poland having already been relegated to League B.

The finals of the tournament will be held in Portugal next year, with two knockout semi-finals being contested before the final itself is played on June 9.