Pep Guardiola insists Joao Cancelo’s loan move from Manchester City to Bayern Munich was motivated by the full-back’s desire to play more.
The Portugal international this week joined the German side for the remainder of the season with a view to a permanent switch.
There have been reports since the surprise transfer was concluded on deadline day that Cancelo had become a disruptive figure in the dressing room after falling out of favour in recent weeks.
City manager Guardiola said: “I wish him the best for the rest of the season, these four months. Next season I don’t know what will happen.
“After the World Cup, we made a ‘pre-season’ and started to play in a different way in some patterns. I liked what I watched and I decided to give more time to players who I saw on the pitch.
“He is a guy who needs to play to be happy and we decided together, all three parties, to let him go to Munich.
“He wants to play every single game and hopefully that can happen in Munich.”
Another player City will be without in the short term is defender John Stones, who is facing up to a month on the sidelines with a hamstring injury.
The England centre-back was forced off during last Friday’s FA Cup victory over Arsenal.
Speaking at a press conference to preview Sunday’s Premier League trip to Tottenham, Guardiola said: “It’s three weeks, one month (out). Unfortunately, a lot of games.”