Manchester City have started their journey to London for the Community Shield clash against Chelsea by boarding the train to the capital on Saturday afternoon.
Pep Guardiola and his players looked to be in good spirits as they aim to secure the new season’s first piece of silverware against Maurizio Sarri’s men on Sunday.
New signing Riyad Mahrez was among the travelling party and is expected to play a crucial role at Wembley, with a host of first team stars still not ready for action following their roles at the World Cup.
The 27-year-old was forced off the pitch after a tough challenge by Bayern Munich defender Chris Richards in their final pre-season clash in their United States tour. He was then seen on crutches as he arrived back in England with a protective boot on, however, it now seems that he has been passed fit by the City medical staff.
The Algerian attacker even stopped to pose for photos with supporters who had waited for the team to make their arrival.
Guardiola – who guided City to the Premier League and League Cup double last season – will not have the services of Raheem Sterling and midfielder Kevin De Bruyne this weekend, with both players still not ready following the World Cup in Russia.
German pair Leroy Sane and Ilkay Gundogan were also snapped. Sane will be keen to impress following his omission from his nation’s World Cup squad and retain his starting role following the arrival of Mahrez this summer.
Gundogan started pre-season training in a protective mask after going under the knife to correct a deviated septum this summer and is expected to wear it once again on Sunday.
Captain Vincent Kompany also headed south with the squad but it remains to be seen what part he will play following Belgium’s run to the semi-finals in Russia.