Vincent Kompany will be a major doubt for Manchester City's potentially crucial top-flight clash with Arsenal on Sunday (8 May) after suffering yet another injury blow during the Champions League semi-final second-leg defeat to Real Madrid. The long-serving skipper was restored to Manuel Pellegrini's starting lineup at the Santiago Bernabeu after being rested for last weekend's 4-2 defeat to Southampton alongside the likes of Kevin de Bruyne and Sergio Aguero.
However, his night was ended after less than 10 minutes when he went down in considerable discomfort after playing a routine pass. The issue did not look to be a repeat of the calf problems that have dogged Kompany over recent months and restricted him to just 13 starts in the Premier League, and he instead looked to be grasping his thigh as he called for treatment before limping off to be replaced by Eliaquim Mangala.
"Well of course it's not the best thing to make a change to the defenders in the first six minutes, but I don't think that tonight we had any problems in defence," Pellegrini told BT Sport after the final whistle. "Our problem was that we were not very creative in the last third where we must make the difference. We had a clear chance with Fernandinho, but nothing much during the 90 minutes. The same as Real Madrid. Real Madrid didn't create any chances also."
When asked if the injury was to his thigh, the manager added: "I don't know. We'll see tomorrow."
Losing a player and leader of Kompany's influence seemed to greatly affect City, who began the night on the front foot before gradually ceding control back to a Real side spearheaded by the returning Cristiano Ronaldo. The tie was won courtesy of Gareth Bale, whose right-footed first-half effort from a difficult angle took a huge deflection before bouncing in off the post and was later awarded by Uefa as a Fernando own goal.
Despite being second best throughout the remainder of the match, a 0-0 scoreline from the first leg meant that the visitors still had a chance to book a place in their first Champions League final by notching an away goal. Many questioned if it was written in the stars for them to nick it late on as Bale headed against the post and Joe Hart reacted quickly to thwart both Luka Modric and Ronaldo before substitute James Rodriguez lost his footing from six yards, but their off-the-ball movement was hopelessly static and only an ambitious late strike from the otherwise anonymous Sergio Aguero threatened to test goalkeeper Keylor Navas before landing on the roof of the net.
It was a meek way to lose a semi-final and supporters will have been frustrated by a total lack of conviction or intensity. Pellegrini, who is set to be replaced by Pep Guardiola this summer, will now turn his attentions to securing qualification for next season's Champions League. His team do currently occupy fourth place, but the gap to Manchester United in fifth is now just four points and their rivals have played one match less. City close the season away to Swansea City on 15 May.