A new court hearing date has been set for Manchester City defender Benjamin Mendy after he was charged with two more counts of rape.
The France international, who is now accused of six counts of rape, relating to four women, did not appear in person or via video link at a hearing at Chester Crown Court on Thursday.
The 90-minute hearing, involving prosecutor Ian Unsworth QC and Eleanor Laws QC, defending Mendy, dealt with administrative and legal matters which cannot be reported ahead of his jury trial early next year.
The defendant is currently being held in HMP Altcourse, Liverpool.
Mendy, 27, was first arrested and charged with sexual offences on August 26, and remanded into custody.
He has been denied bail on three occasions since.
On Tuesday Mendy was charged with two more offences of rape and appeared at Manchester Magistrates' Court via video link on Wednesday.
Mendy faces seven charges in all, against four women, which are: three counts of rape on October 11 2020; sexual touching on January 2 2021; one count of rape on July 24 2021 and two counts of rape on August 23 2021.
Judge Steve Everett, Honorary Recorder of Chester, set a further date of December 22 to deal with the two new rape charges and other matters ahead of the trial.
His co-defendant, Louis Saha Matturie, of Eccles, Greater Manchester, also charged with sex offences in August, was also not present for Thursday's hearing.
Matturie, 40, was also charged with further offences on Tuesday: one of sexually touching a woman in Sheffield in 2016, and two further counts of rape, one in March this year and another in July.
He now faces six counts of rape in total and one of sexual assault.
None of the women involved, as complainants of alleged sex offences, can be identified.
No application for bail was made on Thursday for either defendant.
Both men are due to go on trial on January 24, 2022.
Mendy has played for Manchester City since 2017, when he joined from Monaco for a reported £52m.
He was suspended by the club after being charged by police, pending an investigation.