He is an important player for me and an important player for us as a club. We knew it from the beginning, everyone had that feeling, everyone had it.
"We don't want to be injured, but maybe this injury helped us", said Guardiola.
De Bruyne was outstanding as City became the first team in English top-flight history to record 100 points in a season in May, winning the club's player of the year prize and narrowly losing out to Liverpool's Mohamed Salah for national awards voted for by players and journalists.
The Belgian has been restricted to just three substitute appearances in the Premier League and not featured at all since the first week of November.
Kevin De Bruyne is also closing in on a return and could feature on Saturday, although Guardiola may opt against throwing him straight in from the start despite an injury to David Silva.
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Other than defeat to Chelsea last weekend, City have barely missed a beat without the Belgian, but the return of their Player of the Year in last season's record-breaking campaign is an early Christmas present for Guardiola ahead of Liverpool's visit to the Etihad on Jan 3.
In the week that he was linked with Barcelona, Everton forward Richarlison has received a further boost after being praised heavily by Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola. Davies broke onto the scene in January 2017 after scoring a sensational goal at Goodison Park against the Cityzens.
Everton of England's Nigerian-born winger, Ademola Lookman has declared that he loves playing under The Toffees' manager, Marco Silva.
"I told our players at half-time we needed to keep our good organisation and at one moment we would take more risks". I'm really impressed how well they do.
The group stage of the Champions League have just been concluded and all eyes are now on who plays who in the round 16. No pain, so we will see [if he plays tomorrow].