Vincent Kompany has played down fears that he will miss the Manchester derby, saying he hopes to be fit after the international break.
Kompany, 27, suffered a groin injury in the 4-0 opening day win over Manchester City and is set to miss Belgium’s World Cup qualifier against Scotland.
City boss Manuel Pellegrini said his captain could be sidelined for a month, but Kompany suggested he could return in time for the start of City’s Champions League campaign on either September 17 or 18 and the meeting with United on September 22.
“I’ll be out for a little while, but not too long,” he told City’s official website. “I may miss the internationals, but I hope to be back after that.
“I’ve been here before and I’m going to work hard to get back as quickly as possible. There are worse things that can happen, but the only disappointment is that the season began so positively for me and everything went really well during pre-season.
“There is a protocol to follow with any injury, and there is a timescale that goes with that. If I follow that schedule, I know when I’ll be back in a certain amount of weeks, and possibly sooner.”
Kompany was absent for City’s 3-2 defeat at Cardiff on Sunday and will sit out Saturday’s home game against Hull.
Although he missed two months of last season with a troublesome calf, he is adamant that his latest spell on the sidelines is not proof he is becoming increasingly injury-prone.
He added: “It is a freak injury that has nothing to do with the previous problems -- it can happen -- but I know that when I return I’ll be absolutely fine.”