Kompany ruled out of own testimonial with injury
MANCHESTER, England -- Vincent Kompany was forced to sit out his own testimonial because of a hamstring injury and watched form the sidelines as his Manchester City legends drew 2-2 with a Premier League All Star XI at the Etihad Stadium.
Benjani got a late equaliser for City, who gave cameos to current stars Sergio Aguero and David Silva, after former Manchester United striker Robin van Persie and Robbie Keane had scored for the All Stars to cancel out Martin Petrov's opener.
Earlier in the day, City marked Kompany's 11 years at the club by renaming a road at their CFA training ground Vincent Kompany Crescent and commissioning a sculpture in his honour at the Etihad Stadium.
More that 51,000 supporters came to give Kompany -- appointed manager of Anderlecht in the summer -- a final send off with all the proceeds being using to tackle homelessness in Manchester.
Kompany left City after last season and had been blighted by injuries in recent years. His tally of 17 Premier League appearances last season was the most in a single campaign since 2014-15, when he managed 25.
The four-time Premier League-winning captain played against some of the best defenders in the world during his 11 years at the Etihad Stadium but said he rates Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk as the best because of the way the Netherlands international has transformed Liverpool.
"I go back to players that really impressed me when I played against them, central defenders, and I would bring it back to Virgil van Dijk," Kompany said.
"It is a weird one because he hasn't been on the scene for as long as John Terry or Rio Ferdinand but the signs he showed in the last few years, it shows if he had been at the top level for longer, he would be further.
"Being a defender is how you make your team more solid. The Liverpool before Van Dijk and after, it is a completely different set up."
Guardiola is hopeful John Stones will be available to face Norwich at the weekend following a muscle injury otherwise he will be forced to field either Fernandinho or Kyle Walker in an unfamiliar position in the centre of defence.
"The key thing is by losing Laporte you lose a big player and I think with the big players especially, you need them in the bigger games so that's where we'll see [if it has an impact]," Kompany said. "But the key strength of this Manchester City team and what Pep has been able to do is that it is relying more on the system than the individuals.
"If you go back through the last two years in which the team won five of the available six domestic trophies, they've had to deal with long spells of Fernandinho out, long spells of Kevin De Bruyne out, long spells of myself being out, Kun Aguero as well -- big players -- and the team has never seemed to collapse."
Kompany ended his spell at City by lifting the domestic Treble. The only thing missing from his C.V. is the Champions League but said his former club will not have to wait too much longer to add it to their trophy haul under Guardiola.
"The Champions League will come," Kompany said. "I said maybe eight years ago that winning the Premier League is inevitable because of the way people are working behind the scenes.
"If it was just about infrastructure and it looking fancy. I'd be more worried but because of how they work and the consistency of this club it would be ridiculous to bet against City winning the Champions League at some stage.
"It will happen -- it is a matter of time -- just like winning the Premier League was a matter of time because if you invest well and back the right people, it will happen."