Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has defended midfielder Fabian Delph ahead of this weekend’s match with Aston Villa.
Delph left Villa for the Etihad during the summer in an £8 million move and has been subject to all sorts of abuse on social media ever since.
However the City boss doesn’t think the Villa supporters should boo their former captain if he takes to the pitch on Sunday afternoon.
As per the Express, Pellegrini said: “I hope that Fabian will not get a bad reception.
He played for Aston Villa for several years. Aston Villa wanted to sell him also.
He was a player who gave a lot of his career for Aston Villa. I don’t think their fans will forget all of those things.”
And while the Chilean is hoping Villa Park doesn’t turn on the England international, it would appear that several Twitter users are already getting ready to make it a long afternoon for Delph.
Yes, it seems time doesn’t heal all wounds with few forgiving the 25-year-old after he ‘committed’ his future to Villa before making a dramatic U-turn and leaving:
Pellegrini on how #AVFC fans should treat Delph on his Villa Park return? Thanks for service to the club. But how you left was shambolic!?
— Jake (@JakeWelch_88) November 6, 2015
— Kev (@Kevavfc1993) November 6, 2015
Delph vs Villa… ???? Could be intriguing.
— Benedict Chanakira (@bchanakira2) November 6, 2015
Hope Clark plays Sunday. He wouldn't think twice about snapping Delph
— vízzy9 (@vizzy9) November 6, 2015
How about we clap Delph on to the pitch? #avfc.show him our class and remind how stupid he was
— tahir hussain (@tahirtaz) November 6, 2015
Sorry Man City fans but after Pellegrini's ignorant comments regarding Delph I really hope you don't get the title
— Renegade E115 (@Claret_and_Iron) November 6, 2015
Who's doing what to Delph Sunday?
— Avfc 24/7 (@7Avfc) November 6, 2015
Delph’s chances of making a strong start for City were hampered when he pulled his hamstring while on international duty in September.
However the midfielder made his return to the first team in the last 10 minutes of City’s win against Sevilla on Tuesday and is likely to start on the bench this weekend.