Man City: Matija Nastasic suffers injury on Hong Kong pitch

Matija Nastasic
Matija Nastasic

Matija Nastasic has picked up an ankle injury in Manchester City's Asia Trophy final win over Sunderland.

The defender, 20, suffered the blow in the final of the pre-season tournament played on a sodden pitch - criticised by some of the teams - in Hong Kong.

City manager Manuel Pellegrini says the club plan to assess the injury when they return to the UK, but refused to blame the poor playing surface.

"It is part of the game and could have happened on any pitch," he said.

"We are concerned but it is better to wait. He received a kick to his ankle and the doctor is seeing what it could be, but it is impossible for him to know.

"The doctor needs to see him when we arrive in Manchester and then we can know what has happened."

Serbia international Nastasic, who played 76 minutes of the 1-0 win, became the second Premier League defender to fall victim in the treacherous conditions after days of heavy rain at the Hong Kong Stadium.

Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen faces a race to be fit for the start of the season in three weeks after injuring his ankle in a 3-1 defeat by Sunderland at the same venue on Wednesday.

Sunderland manager Paolo Di Canio had previously described the surface at Hong Kong Stadium as "a killer pitch".

Manchester United, who are scheduled to face Kitchee FC in the stadium on Monday, have cancelled plans to hold an open training session at the stadium on Sunday.

Earlier, Spurs cruised to a 6-0 win in a third-fourth play-off over South China thanks to a Jermain Defoe hat-trick.

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