Manuel Pellegrini
Manuel Pellegrini is left to ponder his forward options ahead of Chelsea

Manchester City could be left with just one fit striker in their squad for Chelsea's visit to the Etihad Stadium after manager Manuel Pellegrini revealed Edin Dzeko is struggling with a back injury.

Dzeko, 28, suffered the knock during the 1-0 Champions League defeat to Bayern Munich on 17 September.

City's numbers were reduced at the beginning of the month as Alvaro Negredo was allowed to return to Spain and join Valencia on loan, while Stevan Jovetic is unavailable due to persistent injury problems, meaning Pellegrini is short of options.

"Edin Dzeko has a problem in his back after the game but I hope he will be OK for Sunday," Pellegrini told a press conference on Friday (19 September).

"Jovetic and Fernando continue [to have injury] problems. All the other players are OK."

With the visit of Jose Mourinho's side in mind, Pellegrini opted to leave Sergio Aguero out of the squad that lost at the Allianz Arena midweek. The Argentine has struggled with calf and hamstring injuries throughout the year but his manager believes he is in the right condition to lead his side's attack against Chelsea.

"Maybe Sergio in this moment is not ready to play three games in a row in one week, [playing] 90 minutes [in all]," Pellegrini said. "That is why I thought it was better for him and the squad not to play 90 minutes against Bayern. He is fresh for Sunday and I am sure he will make a difference."

Frank Lampard is also in contention to line up against the club where he achieved legendary status, becoming the Blues' all-time top scorer with 211 goals during his 13 years at Stamford Bridge.

"I don't think it is a difficult situation for him," Pellegrini said of Lampard. "I think Frank didn't continue in Chelsea because Chelsea didn't want him, not because he wanted to come here to Manchester City. He couldn't continue with the team he played his whole life for.

"He has all the rights to continue playing football. He arrived here and we are very happy with him. Frank is part of our squad and for sure he will be involved."