Vincent Kompany was not part of the Manchester City squad that flew to southern Italy on Tuesday (31 October) for a Champions League fixture against Napoli. hE now looks almost certain to remain sidelined for the weekend visit of Arsenal, having yet to return to first-team training.
City' long-serving, injury-plagued captain has made just three appearances for his club so far this season after sustaining yet another calf problem while on international duty with Belgium in late August.
Pep Guardiola confirmed at the end of last week that Kompany was "much better" and stated his belief that the centre-back could be back in training within seven to 10 days.
Such a return does not appear to have happened yet, however, with Kompany not present during a session held shortly before the flight to Naples.
The 31-year-old was then unsurprisingly omitted from the 22-man travelling squad confirmed by City and any hope – however minor – that he might be able to return to action before the next international break now seems to have been firmly extinguished.
City will also definitely remain without summer signing Benjamin Mendy against both Serie A leaders Napoli and Premier League rivals Arsenal.
The world's most expensive defender travelled to Barcelona last month for surgery on a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee suffered during the 5-0 drubbing of Crystal Palace and is expected to remain sidelined until around the time of the Champions League semi-finals in late April/early May 2018.
Free-scoring English title favourites City's only other confirmed absentee for the midweek return clash against Napoli is highly-rated young midfielder Phil Foden.
The academy star recently collected the Golden Ball award for player of the tournament at the Under-17 World Cup in India after scoring a second-half brace to help Steve Cooper's talented England side, European Championship runners-up in May, overturn a 2-0 first-half deficit to beat Spain 5-2 in Sunday's final in Kolkata.
Foden has yet to make his senior debut for City, although has been included in several matchday squads. The 17-year-old, who was joined in England's successful squad by club teammates Curtis Anderson and Joel Latibeaudiere, would have played against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Carabao Cup fourth round last week had he been in the country.
"Phil has been with [the first team] since the beginning of the season," Guardiola said earlier this week.
"He trains with us every single day. He's just 17 but he is in our squad. He's in the locker room every day with the guys – it's the best way to learn from the experienced guys that have played at a high level."
Manchester City's 20-man travelling squad for Napoli Champions League tie
Claudio Bravo, Kyle Walker, Danilo, John Stones, Raheem Sterling, Ilkay Gundogan, Sergio Aguero, Eliaquim Mangala, Kevin De Bruyne, Fabian Delph, Leroy Sane, Bernardo Silva, David Silva, Tosin Adarabioyo, Fernandinho, Nicolas Otamendi, Ederson, Gabriel Jesus, Yaya Toure, Aro Muric