Pep Guardiola is confident Gabriel Jesus’ injury will not rob Manchester City of their momentum.
City’s have found greater consistency in recent weeks with new signing Jesus at the heart of their improved form.
But the impressive 19-year-old, who has scored three goals in five appearances, now faces up to three months out after breaking his foot in Monday’s Premier League victory at Bournemouth.
Manager Guardiola said: “We played Tottenham without Gabriel and we played really good against one of the best teams in the Premier League. We did very good things with Gabriel but also without him.
“So I am sad and also I am sad for him. Like (Ilkay) Gundogan, we miss them a lot, it’s tough for them.
“But we had seven strikers, we are going to use another one and of course Sergio (Aguero) will be so important for us.”
Jesus is now in Barcelona having been operated on by renowned surgeon Dr Ramon Cugat.
There is a possibility the youngster could be back in action before the end of the season but Guardiola admits he is unsure.
He said: “He comes back when he is fit, I don’t know, at the end of the season or next season. People say between two and three months.”
Jesus’ absence is likely to mean the return of top scorer Aguero to the starting line-up. The prolific Argentinian, who has scored 18 goals this season and 154 since joining the club in 2011, has started the last three games on the bench.
Guardiola accepts is not a straight swap and the team may play differently as a result.
He said: “Sergio has to do what he has done all of is career, nothing more. When Gabriel played in the last three games I didn’t ask him to do what Sergio does, and I’m not going to ask Sergio to do what Jesus did. Just go there, play as best as possible, that’s all.”
Guardiola says he will make “some” changes as City travel to Huddersfield in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Saturday but will decide on the day if Claudio Bravo returns in goal.
Guardiola expects a test from Huddersfield, who are third in the Sky Bet Championship.
Speaking at a press conference, said: “Right now Huddersfield are in a big moment. They are a very intense team, very aggressive.”
Guardiola brought up the fact the John Smith’s Stadium hosted Huddersfield Giants’ Super League match against Salford on Thursday, but then denied it would be an issue.
He said: “Yesterday there was a rugby game in their stadium, so we can imagine the conditions of the pitch.
“Someone sent me a picture of the pitch. It was not perfect but I understand.
“Huddersfield are playing at home. It’s their stadium and they can do whatever they want. Robbie Williams is coming here to our stadium to play a concert, so everybody can use their stadium as they want. We are going to adapt.”
City are heading to Abu Dhabi, home of owner Sheikh Mansour, for a warm-weather training camp after the game.
Guardiola said: “We are going there to find some sun because there has been a lot of time in Manchester without seeing the sun! And to see our chairman.”
Guardiola’s former team Barcelona were thrashed 4-0 in the Champions League by Paris Saint-Germain earlier in the week. With coach Luis Enrique under pressure, there have been reports star player Lionel Messi would like to see Guardiola back in charge at the Nou Camp.
But Guardiola said: “No, I will never go back to Barcelona to be coach there. My period there is gone.”