Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed that Riyad Mahrez will have a week's break before returning to first-team action.
The 30-year-old captained Algeria at the Africa Cup of Nations, however the current holders were surprisingly eliminated at the group stage, finishing bottom of Group E with just one point from their three games.
Guardiola has since revealed that he has granted Mahrez a week of holiday, meaning that the winger will not travel with the squad to St Mary's for Saturday evening's Premier League game with Southampton.
Speaking to the press on Friday, Guardiola said: "[Mahrez] has holiday for a week. After African Cup, he has permission for week off to come back next week."
With a two-week winter break on the horizon, the next fixture Mahrez could be available for is the FA Cup fourth-round encounter at home against Fulham on February 5.
Guardiola has also confirmed that Nathan Ake will be in contention to feature on Saturday, after building up his fitness in training this week, though Oleksandr Zinchenko remains sidelined with a knock.
City will be looking to claim their 13th successive Premier League win and potentially extend their 11-point gap at the top of the table when they face the Saints on the South Coast.