Manchester City will be without manager Pep Guardiola for at least their next two Premier League games after he underwent emergency back surgery.
Guardiola flew back to his native Spain to go under the knife after “suffering from severe back pain for some time”, the English champions said.
The 52-year-old is set to stay in Barcelona while he recovers from the operation and is not expected to return to the dugout until after next month’s international break.
His assistant Juanma Lillo will take charge of the first team in the interim, during which time City are scheduled to play Sheffield United and Fulham.
Guardiola was treated by Dr Mireia Illueca, a specialist surgeon at the Barcelona Spine Institute, in what the club described as a successful routine procedure.
City said on Tuesday: “Pep Guardiola has today undergone a routine operation on a back problem.
“The Manchester City boss has been suffering with severe back pain for some time lately, and flew out to Barcelona for emergency surgery performed by Dr Mireia Illueca. The surgery was a success, and Pep will now recover and rehabilitate in Barcelona.
“In his absence, assistant manager Juanma Lillo will oversee coaching of the first team on the training field and will assume duties on the touchline until Pep’s return. He is expected to return after the forthcoming international break.
“Everyone at Manchester City wishes Pep a speedy recovery, and look forward to seeing him back in Manchester soon.”
Guardiola has led City to an era of unprecedented success that has included five Premier League titles, two FA Cups and a Champions League.
They have made a perfect start to the new campaign, beating Burnley and Newcastle United as well as lifting the European Super Cup.