Manchester City defender Benjamin Mendy will spend Christmas in prison after he appeared in court accused of rape by a fourth woman.
Mendy, 27, is already facing serious sex offence allegations and was charged with another rape offence relating to a new complainant last week.
Reporting restrictions were lifted on Wednesday when Mendy appeared at Chester Crown Court for a hearing ahead of his trial next year.
The charge relates to a new complainant and is alleged to have taken place in July this year.
Mendy is now accused of eight offences against five different women, including seven counts of rape relating to four women.
The earlier charges are three counts of rape, alleged to have happened 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.
The France international, wearing a black suit and white shirt, spoke only to confirm his name during the 40-minute hearing and followed proceedings by an interpreter.
A proposed trial date of January 24 next year has been rescheduled and his trial will now start on either June 27 or August 1.
The defendant is currently being held in HMP Altcourse, Liverpool.
Mendy, of Withinlee Road, Prestbury, Cheshire, has been in custody since he was first arrested and charged with sexual offences on August 26.
His co-defendant, Louis Saha Matturie, of Eccles, Greater Manchester, also charged with sex offences in August, appeared alongside him at the hearing on Wednesday.
Matturie, 40, is accused of six counts of rape in and one of sexual assault.
None of the women involved, as complainants of alleged sex offences, can be identified.
Further pre-trial hearings will be held on January 7 and January 24.
Judge Patrick Thompson remanded both defendants into custody until January 7.
Mendy has played for Manchester City since 2017, when he joined from Monaco for a reported £52million. He was suspended by the club after being charged by police, pending an investigation.
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